The need for donations for organizations that feed the hungry never goes away, but after a long holiday season of food drives and donations, sometimes the supply does.
Even on the day after Christmas, the Greater Cleveland Food Bank looks like Santa’s workshop before the holiday.
“We have a full schedule of volunteers from now until New Year’s Eve,” said Greater Cleveland Food Bank Vice President of External Affairs Mary LaVigne-Butler.
At the Fairview Park Hunger Center, the shelves are overflowing. The center is supported by churches in Fairview Park, and the Christmas season was good to it.
But Director Carol Napp says the new year brings other things for people to focus on, and the overwhelming supply will run out as donations stop coming in.
“Donations will almost go to nil,” said Napp. “Nothing with come in for the next few months.”
The Fairview Park facility is outside the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and helps about 200 people from 85 families nearby. It’s the only way many of them make it month to month.
“This was years ago, the food was meant to last four to five days,” said Napp. “Now it’s a means of living for some of the people.”
Napp said she may not see consistent donations until the Easter season, aside from the occasional fundraiser or food drive.
LaVigne-Butler says in the Greater Cleveland Food Bank system, where donations are usually strong year round, the fundraising and donation work doesn't end in December.
“Come the first of the year, we’ll be full court press again because we know it’s a long winter here in Cleveland,” said LaVigne-Butler.