Notes from the Director

HOClogoREVHappy Summer to you all! Hopefully you are enjoying your summer. We have all been extra busy here at The House of Concern. It seems that each summer gets a little bit busier.

We opened the New Beginnings Boutique consignment shop on Fall Street in July. It is really a very nice shop and if you have not had a chance to check it, out make sure you do so. We are very proud of it. We are still accepting clothing either as a donation or you can sell them to us. Its a great way to recycle your wardrobe, make a little money and support a good cause. The proceeds go to keep our Food Pantry running 5 days a week, 6 hours a day.

It takes a lot to do so these days. Every month the number of clients that we serve gets larger and larger. For the month of July we served more than at any time ever. We have been steadily rising over the last several months but this July we had a very sharp increase. That is because children are home and families are having a difficult time keeping them fed and paying the bills. Lots of these families are used to their children being fed at school, often twice a day. Having them home strains an already strained budget.

We are part of the Summer Backpack Program again this year. We are serving about 75 children twice a week with food. We have a great group of volunteers who have made this possible. We could not have done it without them.

Summer is such a difficult time for most food pantries. Donations drop, volunteers go on vacation, but the needs continue. We have been blessed this year to be part of Foodlinks Retail Donation. Stores such as Wal-Mart, Target, and BJ’s have been donating foods to us through Foodlink. I must say that without them we would not be able to meet the sort of needs that we have been experiencing. It simply would not be possible. So a huge Thank-You to all those stores and to Foodlink for making this possible.

We continue to hold the Mobile Pantries at our site. This has also been very successful. It takes a good group of hard working volunteers to pull it off but we have been fortunate enough to have those. You can read more about the Mobile Pantry in this newsletter.
Last, I leave you with this. I have been spending a long time on getting all our files entered into the computer.

What that has done is really brought home to me how many working families we have as clients. This is definitely the biggest increase we have seen. I doubt that you can name a business around here that does not have someone, often many someones, who can’t afford to feed their families even though they are working.

So when you think of what the face of a Food Pantry recipient might look like, look at your neighbor, or your co-worker, your mom, the waitress who serves your lunch, your child, yourself, because that is who we serve.
Thank you for your continued support ~