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February 26, 2013

Local food pantries serving more households

PLATTSBURGH — Nancy Hobbs hopes the Interfaith Food Shelf will raise enough food and money for hungry people this year.

In January, the Plattsburgh organization provided food to 2,312 people, 435 more than at the same time last year, according to Hobbs, a Food Shelf volunteer. That’s 726 households, up from 576 in January 2012.

The latest numbers include 80 households that Hobbs said had not been served before.

Interfaith Food Shelf is again working to win funds from the Feinstein Foundation, which will distribute $1 million nationwide this year proportionally among the groups that take part in its the challenge set for March 1 through April 30.

Hobbs is encouraging people, clubs and local businesses to donate double what they otherwise would have given within that time period.

Donations may be monetary, pledges or food, which will be valued at $1 per item or pound.

“People are more apt to give when they know their donation will (earn more for the cause),” Hobbs said.

MANY HELP

The Interfaith Food Shelf is located at Plattsburgh United Methodist Church on Beekman Street, where donors can drop off food and donations, as well. 

Hours are 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday and 4 to 7 p.m. Friday evenings.

Hobbs said clubs, churches, schools and local businesses donate to the Interfaith Food Shelf regularly, among them the YMCA and Price Chopper.

“There are a lot of people responsible for the success of the organization,” she said.

There are no special qualifications for people to receive food from the Interfaith Food Shelf. All are welcome, no matter how much money they make, because it is an emergency place for the needy to obtain food, Hobbs said.

She thinks the Feinstein Challenge is beneficial because it gives money back to the organizations that feed people.

“I think that’s a wonderful feeling, that there are people who are that charitable and giving,” she said. “There’s a great satisfaction in giving to others in need.”

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