At The River’s 2016 Harvest Dinner for Hunger, we met Katie. For many years, Katie and her husband have been struggling to feed their four children but always seemed to make it work. “We don’t live above our means,” Katie said. “We’re just trying to make a living but times are tough right now.” Katie has been shopping at The River Food Pantry for over a year. “It’s not cheap to feed a family of six,” Katie explained. “Especially in the summer when the kids are home for all three meals.”
Before shopping at The River, Katie’s husband would raise enough money for groceries by scrapping metal on the weekends. Katie recalled visiting grocery stores with a calculator in one hand and a list in the other making sure not to go over their budget. “I used to plan my grocery shopping and visit multiple stores,” Katie recalled. “I knew exactly what store had the best prices for items we needed.”
Unfortunately, last year the price of metal dropped drastically. Katie and her husband could no longer afford food for their four children. “We went from making $100 for groceries to barely $30,” Katie said. “It’s impossible to feed a family of six on that type of budget. We were struggling and needed help.”
Katie said since shopping at The River, the stress of not knowing what to feed her children has gone away. “We’re still struggling but I at least know there will be food on the table for my kids every night,” Katie said. “Without The River, I’m not sure what my children would have to eat. It will get better for our family, but for right now we’re able to keep our head above water with the help from The River.”
Katie said she enjoys shopping at the pantry and bringing her kids for dinner. “The staff have become like an extended family to me,” she said smiling.
For the past ten years, The River Food Pantry has been offering a hand up, not a hand out to people in the community like Katie. “My husband and I are trying to make a living and we thank God there’s a place like this to help us when we need it.”
The River is a completely self-funded organization, meaning we rely on donations to keep our shelves stocked so individuals and families, like Katie, know they have a place for food and comfort. Learn more about The Power of Ten and ways you can support The River here.