Donations needed to reverse summer food slump

Officer helps woman in food shelf

Donations to Salvation Army food shelves could soon take a nosedive.

Info graphicHistorically, The Salvation Army has experienced a sharp drop in food donations between May and June. During the past two years alone, donations to our eight Twin Cities food shelves plummeted from an average of 256,000 pounds of food donated in May to 71,000 pounds donated in June. That’s a 360-percent swing.

Many of our 16 food shelves in North Dakota and Greater Minnesota are also anticipating a slump. Example: Last year in Bismarck, N.D., food donations dipped nearly 30 percent between May and June, dropping from 28,500 pounds given in May to under 21,000 pounds in June. During the same time period in International Falls, Minn., food donations were cut nearly in half.

Friday Food Fair in St. PaulThis is bad news for the 42,000 people who depend on Salvation Army food shelves in Minnesota and North Dakota. People like Kenyana, a single mother of four. She often comes to The Salvation Army’s weekly fresh-food giveaway in St. Paul, called “Friday Food Fair“(pictured).

“I most like getting the vegetables here – especially kale,” Kenyana said. “We can’t afford fresh food sometimes because it’s too expensive. There are a lot of people who come here who really need this.”

Thankfully, there is still time left in June to reverse this negative trend.

“With help from our supporters, history does not have to repeat itself,” said Terry Hildebrandt, assistant social services director for The Salvation Army Northern Division. “We encourage everybody to give what they can to help The Salvation Army feed hungry families.”

Here are four ways to help:

  • Give online. The money you donate will help The Salvation Army to purchase food and restock our shelves.
  • Donate food. Clean out your pantry or purchase food at a grocery store and drop it off at your nearest Salvation Army food shelf in the Twin Cities, Greater Minnesota and North Dakota.
  • Man waters gardenGrow a row. Resolve to “grow a row” in your garden for families served by Salvation Army food shelves. Maximize your harvest with fast-growing veggies such as baby carrots, beets, lettuce, squash, and cucumbers. Other helpful produce includes snap peas, beans, tomatoes, onions, and potatoes. Donate your abundance at your nearest Salvation Army food shelf in the Twin Cities, Greater Minnesota and North Dakota.

The Salvation Army Northern Division pledges to do the most good with your gifts of time and money, with 81 cents of every dollar going directly to services. Join us by volunteering or making a donation to support your local community. Stay current on how The Salvation Army is changing lives in Minnesota and North Dakota by signing up for our e-Newsletters.

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