The Morning Newsâ€”Melanie Moore
Bingham County Program Coordinator Bobette Jackson stands next to the nearly empty shelves in the food bank at the Southeastern idaho Community Action Agency in Blackfoot. The shelves are typically filled with pastas, cereals, rice, beans and other dry food items.
BLACKFOOT â€” An increase in the need for emergency food boxes has severely depleted the supply of dry foods in the food bank at the Southeastern Idaho Community Action Agency in Blackfoot.
Bingham County Program Coordinator Bobette Jackson said they are in dire need of dry foods such as cereals, pastas, rice, beans, pancake or muffin mix and items such as Hamburger Helper, ramen noodles and macaroni and cheese. They will also accept cash donations to purchase food.
Last month SEICAA distributed 97 emergency food boxes that went to feed more than 387 people. A year ago, 65 emergency food boxes were distributedâ€”an increase of nearly one-third.
Emergency food boxes are used to help families who have no food in their homes and no funds to purchase foods. Families are eligible for emergency food boxes every 30 days and are encouraged to also participate in the SEICAA monthly USDA commodity distribution.
Jackson said their unit hours of service increased from 17,000 in 2009 to 30,000 units in 2010. Approximately 2,300 Bingham County households have been served.
The increase in the number of those needing assistance can be attributed to numerous factors including the cost of goods increasing and the rising costs of gas, heat and electricity.
Donations can be made at 206 S. Spruce St. in Blackfoot or by calling 785-1583.