Supplies in the Christian Ministry of Lincoln Countyâ€™s food pantry have started to run alarmingly low.
Food boxes given to clients have been downsized and many items will be completely out within two weeks.
Although this time of year is traditionally slow for the ministry, its executive director has started to worry.
â€œWeâ€™re a bit concerned about all of our ministries right now because of the large impact the energy prices have had on the economy,â€ she said.
Brymer believes high gas prices have discouraged people from both donating and volunteering.
The prices have also hurt the ministryâ€™s clients, who were already struggling to make ends meet.
Scouting for Food, a food drive sponsored by the Boy Scouts of America, will bring food into the ministry later in November, but Brymer says supplies will run out before then.
â€œWe are going to have start purchasing food,â€ she said. â€œThereâ€™s no question about it.â€
Using ministry funds to purchase food cuts back on other services, including aiding the poverty stricken with prescription drug costs, rent and bills.
Brymer has already sent out cards to the ministryâ€™s 92 member churches â€œbegging for their help.â€ The churches traditionally hold food drives twice a year.
â€œWe are really straining the church community,â€ Brymer said.
The food pantry at the Christian Ministry is in need of replenishing â€“ especially dried goods and toiletries. Chris Dean / LTN Photo
Although funds and volunteers have become scarcer, Brymer believes this trend will turn around, provided people learn of the ministryâ€™s need.
â€œI think people in Lincoln County are very giving and have a very warm and considerate heart and will do everything they can,â€ she said.
As for volunteers, they are needed for all areas of Christian Ministry including in the office, soup kitchen, Linc Home Meals route and nursing home ministry.
Brymer has noted the tight economy has forced many retirees to work part time jobs rather than volunteer.
Gas prices have also dissuaded people from volunteering, especially for Linc Home Meals, which requires volunteers to take hot food to the elderly and disabled.
With all that said, the ministry still has thousands of people volunteer every year. The Christmas season brings in an especially large number of volunteers and donations.
â€œOur problem now is making it from September to November,â€ Brymer said.
Items the ministry most needs include: sugar, cookies, oil, crackers, detergent, grits, oatmeal, toilet paper, soup, corn, macaroni and cheese, sugar peas, dry beans and bar soap.
Interested in volunteering or donating items? Call the Christian Ministry of Lincoln County at (704) 732-0383.
by Sarah Grano