WILKES-BARRE – The flier warns:
Hunger doesn't take a holiday.
That's the theme of the first food drive spearheaded by Catholic Social Services that will help feed our hungry neighbors in need.
Monsignor Joseph Kelly, executive director at Catholic Social Services, said the need for the food drive is obvious.
The need has grown considerably, he said. All of our food pantries are struggling.
Kelly said planning the food drive began over the summer and the Weinberg Food Bank at the Commission on Economic Opportunity was selected to receive the donated food because it can distribute it to all food banks in Luzerne County.
This situation is everywhere, Kelly said. So many new families are in need who never went to a food bank before. But they have to go now because they can't make ends meet.
Kelly attended a meeting of the state Catholic Charities recently and everyone attending said they are experiencing the same increase in demand.
We all have to do whatever we can to meet this need, he said.
The food drive will culminate Saturday during the downtown Christmas parade. Kelly said everyone attending the parade is asked to bring non-perishable food items and deposit them in boxes that will be located along the parade route and on Public Square.
We ask that everyone bring at least one item, Kelly said.
Boxes also are located in Boscov's, The Times Leader, St. Vincent DePaul Kitchen and other locations in the downtown, he said.
We are trying to reach as many people as we can, Kelly said.
A flier for the food drive includes a quote from the late Mother Teresa: If you can't feed a hundred, then feed just one.
With Santa Claus coming to downtown and holiday lights twinkling, Wilkes-Barre is filled with the holiday spirit.
Show your holiday spirit by bringing a can of non-perishable, in-date food to donate to someone in need in our community, Kelly said.
Vegetable low-sodium soup
Tuna fish packed in water
Canned fruit in water or light syrup
Mac & cheese
Boxes of cereal
Bags or cans of rice or beans
Cans of tomato sauce
Bags of pasta