Local food banks are struggling. And the shelves at our very own have no different of a result. “If you walked through our warehouse, you could almost see it went into the other — through the shelves because it’s mostly empty of the nonperishable food items. We’ve been in a little bit of a perfect storm. The gains that people made in their wage have been eroded, and for most of them, what that means is they’re actually worse now than they were before the pandemic, even with a higher wage.” That comes from Michael Guerra.
And he is the San Antonio Food Bank Chief Development Officer.
No one would know better than him. It’s all because of higher prices. Coming in from inflation, gas prices and higher rent. These have all contributed to the increase of people in dire need of assistance from the food bank. Guerra continues on, “Our numbers are actually up compared to how they were in December and with summer looming. And that means kids who are going to be out of school aren’t getting breakfast or lunch at school. That’s actually the biggest wave that we’re concerned about.”
As the summer approaches, it looks like that’s when more individuals and unfortunate families alike will find themselves in need of more food. The reasons why? Most likely it’s because times get hotter, more kids are stuck at home and the weather keeps crops more dry.
“Summer is always our highest time of need. Just hands down, it’s when it spikes. We know that there’s going to be a continued need for food for kids. And so we’re going to have to step in, right?” Guerra agrees, it seems.
And it’s relatively slim pickings, as the San Antonio Food Bank needs help from community partners. But if the United States Postal Service can’t help out with their one day a year that they up the inflow, who will?
Saturday, May 14th, the San Antonio Food Bank will hold the 30th Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. Guerra says, “Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is traditionally the largest one-day food drive in San Antonio every year. It’s an opportunity that our local letter carriers get together and collect food from home porches.” During the even, they get employees of the USPS to collect food from every mailbox and to bring each designated family two-to-three cans of food at minimum.
But there’s a worry that might not be enough for the San Antonio Food Bank. Approximately millions of pounds of canned items are necessary to stock the shelves at the warehouse, in order for the Food Bank to be ready in time for the Summer.