When Congress let the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act expire on the first of November, 47 million people nationwide — and over 85,000 households here in Allegheny County — saw cuts to their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. This meant that local food banks and food pantries, which were already straining to help families hurting in this economy, have had to ratchet up their aid to families suffering under the SNAP cuts. From a recent Tribune-Review article:
“There is a tremendous amount of need we’re seeing in the community right now from families suffering from hunger. You don’t expect to see hunger as a real need in our community, but it is,” said Grant Oliphant, president and CEO of The Pittsburgh Foundation.
The number of new households seeking assistance at the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank averages about 3,200 a month, according to the food bank.
“The demand is as high as I’ve ever seen it,” said Lisa Scales, CEO of the food bank.
There is a way that you can help these families. The Pittsburgh Foundation will match up to $200,000 in donations made to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, the Westmoreland County Food Bank or any of 15 local neighborhood food pantries and affiliated organizations listed on their website. To help, you need only to make a donation at www.PittsburghGives.org for at least $25.00 with your Visa or MasterCard. You even get to choose which organizations will benefit from your donation.
This promotion will end on December 31st, so please help your neighbors by giving now!