Better Pittsburgh Group Meals Financial institution sees “an unprecedented quantity of want” – CBS Pittsburgh
WASHINGTON COUNTY, PA (KDKA) – The arrival of a coronavirus vaccine gives hope that the pandemic is coming to an end. But many people are still fighting.
Around 500 families lined up for dinner in Washington County Tuesday, and the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank says demand has never been so high.
“I’ve never done it before. Hopefully it’s helpful, ”said Lori Cook
People like Cook look ahead to the cold winter days and fill up just to get through it all.
“Something has to give. I do not know what it is. Maybe these vaccines will help, but I don’t know, “Cook said.
“We’re seeing an unprecedented need,” said Jordan Hartman of the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.
In its 40 years of existence, the food bank has never seen such a need, dwarfing even the dark days of the steel industry’s collapse. People like Chuck Thomas need help.
“Unemployment controls haven’t really done much. They’re every two weeks and it’s not much, ”said Thomas.
The hope is that the vaccine and a recovery in the economy will make for a brighter spring. But the pandemic has already taken its toll. The food bank has seen food insecurity rise 42 percent.
“It’s difficult as a single mother of two,” said Letitia Frazier, who works but times have made it a lot harder to make ends meet. “When schools are canceled and the children are more at home, a lot more will be eaten.”
Surviving for the next few months requires perseverance and doing what it takes to get through, e.g. For example, waiting in your car for a box of food.
“It’s a blessing so I don’t mind having to wait. I’m just blessed that we can get that little extra help we can need, ”said Dolores Roberts.
Distribution will continue across the region this winter. The food bank wants people to donate and will use those donations wisely.
But the food bank says it has incredible support from the public and Pittsburgh foundations, and has enough supply to meet that demand.