PERRY, Iowa- The Perry Emergency Food Pantry this week posted photos on Facebook showing some shelves with little food. The pantry serves those who meet income guidelines in the Perry School District area.
“Our miscellaneous shelves are particularly bare and what we mean by miscellaneous are anything other than a designated stock item,” said Lou Hoger, the Perry Food Pantry Coordinator “For example, that could be condiments. It could be ketchup, mustard, and Jell-O. It could be peanuts.”
Hoger showed a series of refrigerators and freezers which were completely bare. They normally would have supplies of milk, cheese, and meat.
Hoger said in April 2022 the pantry served 79 families with 250 people. This April, 2023, there were 130 families and 427 people.
“I think one of the most foolish things we could ever do was to reduce food stamps, the SNAP Program, ” said Hoger. “At the time when people are needing that the most it’s being cut.”
Those who have at one time needed the food pantry appreciate its service. That includes WHO 13 News Producer and Journalist Cinthia Naranjo, who is a native of Perry.
“We depended on that for a couple of months,” said Naranjo. “My mom was the only parent working when my dad had terminal lung cancer and for a while my Mom and I and my sisters were wondering, you know what’s for dinner.”
Meanwhile, there is an effort in Perry to hold a food drive for the Emergency Food Pantry. Lydia Olejniczak, a member of the Perry Blue Jays Softball team said they were organizing a food drive for the pantry at a home game along with the high school baseball team as well. She thought it might be next week, but the date has yet to be determined.
People may drop off food supplies at the pantry location. Just go to the intersection of 28th and Willis, and follow the signs to the Emergency Food Bank.