URBANDALE, Iowa — Food pantries can sometimes struggle to keep their shelves stocked, but an unexpected road block shut down one metro location this weekend.
The incident shows just how strong the demand is right now from Iowans needing help to make ends meet. A communication mix-up between the Urbandale Food Pantry and the Des Moines Area Religious Council resulted in the pantry not getting its food order. This meant Urbandale had to close on Saturday until it could get the food shipment on Monday.
The pantry has seen a surge in requests for food since it opened in 2008; the pantry’s executive director says volunteers will serve more than 800 families this month, which is eight times as many as when the center opened. The director also says many of those who come in for the once a month supply of necessities have a job but just can’t support their families.
“It’s because people are not being paid enough in their job. So we have a large percent of our clients are working but they still can’t afford to pay their bills. If you’re working two minimum wage jobs, it’s just not going to be enough to cover the food costs,” said Eileen Boggess.
The pantry is always in need of food donations, but could also use drivers who can pick up and deliver supplies.