Local food pantries seeing record number of families in need

THOMASVILLE, N.C. — Local food pantries say they’re seeing a record number of families in need this summer, the result of recent layoffs and the city’s economic downturn some say.

Organizers at the food pantry at Fairgrove Family Resource Center say it’s getting harder to give help with fewer donations coming in.

“In only six days, we have fed 606 people,” said the center’s executive director, Terri Fisher.

That’s more than half of the 1,000 people they normally serve a month.

“We’re beyond scared,” Fisher said. “We’re petrified.”

Fisher says a big part of why more families need help now is layoffs.

In March, more than 80 people were let go from Thomasville Furniture Industries — one of the biggest employers in the city.

“The trickle-down effect has been enormous,” Fisher said. “We cannot feed the number of people that need help.”

As of May, Thomasville had a seven percent unemployment rate, higher than the national average.

Even so county officials still have hope.

“I’m very upbeat about Thomasville and all of Davidson County,” said County Manager Robert Hyatt.

The county is working on creating incentives to attract more businesses and different industries to the city. One plan — named Project Bart — could bring up to 50 jobs to the area.

It’s a change Fisher hopes comes soon.

“If something doesn’t happen, we will have to close our doors,” she said.

16 comments

  • sinner 3

    False story this isn’t true ask any Democrat the stock market and job market are gret so must be a false flag !!

    • Terri Fisher

      This story is about hunger and is not related to the success of the stock market. Although investors benefiting from it’s success are welcome to donate some of their profits to purchase food to feed hungry people. This story is accurate. I live it every day. I am the director of this center and 62% of the individuals served by our food pantry are children and senior citizens. They deserve respect and have worked all their lives, but unfortunately weren’t able to benefit from the stock market

  • kirabu2014

    Hmmm trickle down? That sounds familiar. Republican Reagan maybe. Maybe if the ex-mayor had kept his nose out of Fair Grove and used money from Tville, they would have some left. Karma stinks doesn’t it Hubie?

    • Terri Fisher

      Politics should not be the focus of your comments. This story is about hunger. We should be thinking about what an innocent child is thinking when they go to bed hungry. Tell a senior citizen they need to make a choice between their medicine or eating for the day. Please visit our website and learn more about this center and our programs. Thank you.

    • kirabu2014

      You’re right politics doesn’t go into it, but aren’t our elected officials the ones that give or take away food stamps? Leading some people to not have enough money for groceries. I’m a Senior Citizen, and I’m sure our elected officials eat on our dime and don’t give a hoot what we have!

  • livingit

    So you refuse to donate to an organization which helps families of people who lost their jobs, because you are afraid that they will feed someone you don’t want to feed? Yep, that sounds like “what would Jesus do” all right. When a person goes in to a food bank to request assistance, they are required to provide social security numbers for all people living in the household, proof of address, etc. So, thank you for your help, Joseph.

    • FaithC

      Livingit – I see you have never volunteered at a food panty. They do not have to provide a SS number. They get a voucher from social services to turn in at the food pantry. Illegals do not have to provide any ID at all at social services. They lie on the forms they fill out as to how many kids they have so they can get more free everything.
      I don’t blame people for not wanting to donate to places that will give most to illegals, when people who have worked for years, paid taxes and now have hit hard times get nothing!

      • Terri Fisher

        I am the Director at this nonprofit. While I cannot speak for the policies other agencies enforce, I will inform you about ours. We are diligent in helping feed hungry people. 98% of those served at our center are US Citizens and suffer from the turmoil you described in your comments. 62% of these people are children and senior citizens. I understand your frustration, but unfortunately you are inaccurate in comparing the policies and procedures of non-profits with those of a government agency. Please visit our website so that you can learn more about our programs and goals. We welcome you to visit our center so that you can see firsthand what we do and LOOK at the faces of the people we help.

    • livingit

      Wow. Nope, I have never volunteered at a food “panty”. But I know someone who does, and I have had the unfortunate necessity of going to a food pantry, because my husband lost his job after working at the same plant for 18 years. And no, we did not get a voucher from social services, and yes, we did have to provide our social security numbers. Do you not understand, that the people you mentioned, who have worked hard for years, paid taxes, and have hit hard times, are also hurt when people refuse to donate to these pantries? You can’t just hurt the people you don’t like. You’re hurting everyone.

      • Terri Fisher

        Thank you for putting a face for the people we serve. We never know what health issues can develop in our lives, what impact a reduction in work force can take on a family and affirming those we serve are eligible and need a helping hand.

    • livingit

      Yes,,, when people lose their jobs, or other life circumstances cause them to need assistance, they should lose their vehicle too. That way they won’t be able to look for work, etc. and they can just go crawl into a ditch and die. Sounds about right, according to some on here. Anyhow, that truck is probably at least 10 years old.

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