Furloughed Federal Workers Turning To Oklahoma Food Pantries
EDMOND, Oklahoma - Food pantries across the metro are helping families amid government shutdown struggles. So far, they've missed one paycheck but a second is likely and putting food on the table is a priority.
“On the average, we will handle over 500 families in a month,” said Project 66 Food and Resource Center Warehouse Manager Roy Thomas.
He says volunteers are always prepared to do more, even if that means working into the night.
“Whether it’s an additional day that we need to open, or through our regular service times on Monday and Thursday,” said Thomas.
Thomas said the government shutdown has left some families that are running out of money in unfamiliar territory.
“We know human nature, a lot of us live paycheck to paycheck. So, when that first paycheck stops, then we think everything is going to be okay. But the next paycheck happens, and we start looking to how to feed our family,” said Thomas.
And because hunger doesn't discriminate, ASTEC Charter Public Schools opened its food pantry to student families impacted by the shutdown.
“We want our scholars here to understand that we love and care about them, and that we have an interest in making sure that their families have the things that they need,” said ASTEC Charter Schools Superintendent Shannon Grimes.
The school hopes with a little help, students can focus on their studies.
“Nutrition has so much to do with brain development. And also, you can’t concentrate if you’re hungry in class,” said Grimes.
Thomas said they're happy to lend a helping hand to those struggling to make ends meet.
“We don’t want people to be embarrassed. We are here to help them. We want them to come in here. They will be treated with dignity and respect,” said Thomas.
Project 66 serves the Edmond, Arcadia and Luther areas.