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Hunger continues to be a growing problem in SWVA, the community can help

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SALEM (WSLS 10) Hunger continues to be an issue across the Commonwealth and in Southwest Virginia. Each year thousands of families in the area rely on food banks to feed their children.

To help prevent another family from going hungry, WSLS 10 is once again teaming up with Feeding America Southwest Virginia and Kroger for the 10 cares food drive.

Feeding America stocks the shelves of more than 100 partner organizations throughout the region.

The Salem Food Pantry is one of those organizations who rely on those donations to operate.

There, the lines are long and the number of those in need are plenty.

"Times are hard," said Brandy Alley.

A single mother, Brandy alley is one of the 53-hundred families that wait in line for a weeks worth of food to feed their children at the Salem Food Pantry.

"Without their services it would be really difficult for us to make it," Brandy said.

Trying to better her situation, she's working on a college degree but she's had a hard time finding work in the meantime. Money is tight, not only trying to provide for an 8-year-old, but also trying to stay healthy for her new baby.

"I just found out I'm expecting again so trying to take care of myself and an eight year old alone is really difficult," Brandy said.

Brandy's bag will include food for her, her 8-year-old and even the baby when the time comes.

The shelves are stocked with diapers and baby food.

Executive Director Jenny McCormick  says more than thirty five percent of those the pantry serves are children.

Brandy is just one of the more than 14 thousand stories workers here at the Salem food pantry encounter each year.

"Maybe they lost their job, maybe their car broke down and they needed to get their car fixed and didn't have money for food. There is a lot of things that could get happen. You could get sick. Just normal, everyday people who just fall on hard times," McCormick said.

Serving more than 450 families a month, McCormick says they can't do it alone. They rely on Feeding America Southwest Virginia to help those families like Brandy and her children.

"We want to make sure that every food order is complete. Because of feeding America we can go and get food from them and that allows us to stretch our budget so we can make sure that everybody has enough," McCormick said.

And no parent will ever have to return home to their children empty handed.

These organizations rely on the support of the community. The WSLS 10 Cares food drive will be held February 4th at Krogers in:

Roanoke

  • Bonsack
  • Cave Spring corner

Martinsville

  • Liberty Fair Mall

Blacksburg

  • Main Street

Lynchburg

  • Timberlake Road

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