Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Food Banks Facing Tough Times

The current economic crisis is beginning to affect charities that offer the most basic human necessities by forcing these organizations to make tough decisions in regards to their program offerings. The nation’s food banks are being particularly hard hit as the need for their services increase at the same time as donations decrease. In addition, food inflation is hitting all-time highs as the U.S. Department of Labor recently reported that food prices rose 6.5% over the past year. Add to that the needs of those affected by the recent hurricane and you have some serious issues that food banks are facing.

Recently, the largest hunger relief agency in Philadelphia, Philabundance, has decided to cut off their supply of milk to over a dozen after school and day care agencies. These agencies serve more than 1,000 children, for which some, this is the only milk they receive. In New York, $1.27 million of government funds that aid food banks and emergency feeding programs has been cut in order to reduce the budget deficit. This is coming at the same time as all the New York food banks have reported increases in demand for food assistance. Issues similar to these are beginning to pop up across the country.

We here at Charity Navigator have been warning about this crisis and how it will affect the country's local food banks for some time now. Please consider supporting your local food bank or emergency food assistance program. As always, we stress the importance of researching a charity by using our site before you make a donation. You can use our Advanced Search to find a charity in your local area to support or you can view our list of 4 star rated food banks here.

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