Since January, Sue Strawbridge has noticed something troubling about the shelves at Emmanuel's Closet.
There is little food on them.
"We're seeing a difference in the donations of food and donations of money to buy food to give to families," said Strawbridge, Emmanuel's Closet's food coordinator. "We are getting more families signing up for food."
Emmanuel's Closet is located in the basement of Heston Veterinary Medical Center at 780 Lombard Road in Red Lion.
The clothing and food pantry serves more than 130 families in the Red Lion and Dallastown school districts, according to Strawbridge.
More large families -- with at least six people -- are coming to Emmanuel's Closet for help, she said.
"It's the economy and food (prices) are going up," Strawbridge said. "That's why we're getting more families and why donations are low. We get no government supplements at all. We accept donations from the community."
Needs: The pantry needs to replenish its shelves for its
regular food distribution program and collect additional food items used for holiday meals, she said.
The pantry needs cereal and juices and nonperishable food items including meats, vegetables, pastas, stuffing and fruit in cans, Strawbridge said. The pantry cannot accept or distribute outdated food, she added.
Emmanuel's Closet does not store meat at its facility, so it needs financial contributions to purchase gift certificates from grocery stores so families can buy meat for their holiday meals.
Financial donations also are used to offer holiday and school supply programs for children in need, Strawbridge said.
There are 120 children within the families served at Emmanuel's Closet, she said.
"We really need the community's help," Strawbridge said. "The families need our help."
--Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at email@example.com.
How to make a donation
Emmanuel's Closet distributes clothing and food to families in the Dallastown and Red Lion school districts.
The pantry is open from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays in the basement of Heston Veterinary Medical Center, 780 Lombard Road in Red Lion.
Nonperishable food items and monetary donations can be dropped off at the pantry during its operating hours.
Checks, written out to Emmanuel's Closet, can be mailed to St. John's Blymire's United Church of Christ, 1009 Blymire Road, Dallastown 17313.
For information, call the church at 244-0655.