Local News

Drought Hurts Food Bank Supply Just as Demand for Help Grows

Posted November 21, 2007

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— The drought is playing a role in drying up supplies at Raleigh's food bank, and that couldn't come at a worse time.

The Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina has more mouths to feed this Thanksgiving from unexpected places. Food Bank president Peter Werbicki said folks from the lower-middle class, usually able to get by without assistance, are starving under the rising cost of living, including high gas prices.

"We are not keeping up with the demand," he said.

Werbicki said his assistance load is up by nearly 25 percent. Raising the food and funds is hard, especially since the Food Bank has fallen on hard times too.

Gas prices pushed shipping costs $15,000 over budget. That is in spite of there being less food to move. The lack of rain has caused a shortage of Food Bank produce from N.C. farms.

"We've really been hit this year with the drought, really been hit," Werbicki said.

"If it was not for the Food Bank here, there would be a lot of people that would really suffer," Maurice Windley said.

Windley helps feed people at his church with help from the Food Bank. He said he, too, has seen more people needing help in recent months.

23 Comments

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  • mac240 Nov 21, 2007

    Prosecutors are seeking $1 million dollars from Michael Vick to care for dogs he once owned, but there are thousands of people in this country homeless and straving...only in America!

  • CestLaVie Nov 21, 2007

    You know - life just has a way of not working out as we planned or hoped sometimes - such as immense medical debt from illness (ourselves, our children, our parents, etc.), illness itself, bankruptcies due to circumstances really far beyond our control such as lengthy unemployment, marrying the wrong person & being emotionally unable to move out or on, bearing children with mental or physical disabilities, etc., etc. I could go on & on. Many people can tackle life with ALL or part of these problems & come out smelling like a rose; a majority of people can't or don't. Like lornadoone suggested, walk in their shoes first before criticizing how or why they couldn't, after years of setbacks, put aside just $25 a week for 45 years. Those years fly by, especially with good intentions of doing just what you suggest, Steve. But mostly, that $25 may be needed in many other good places FIRST. And guess how much you feel like going to college, working 2 jobs at 50+.

  • CestLaVie Nov 21, 2007

    "If you are in high school, you should be making at least $7 to $9 per hour at a part time job. With a diploma, the going rate is between $10 and $14 per hour. With some college, you jump to $15 to $20 per hour. College graduates start at perhaps $22 per hour and run to $30 or so -- and that includes teachers who pull in starting about $25 an hour. Professional trades people can easily gross $30 to $50 per hour depending on the trade. And remember, those are starting salaries or ones that you would make after proving yourself for three to six months."

    Well, my, my, Steve - don't you have it all figured out. But, you are wrong. I have a bachelors degree from NCSU (for which I worked LONG & HARD to obtain!!), work for STATE gov't. @ earn $18/hour. That skews your figures right there. I've worked 2 jobs at many different times while attending college, so I know the difficulty of just surviving.

  • Steve Crisp Nov 21, 2007

    But back to the food bank issue...

    I have some serious problems with food banks, Goodwill, the Salvation Army, homeless shelters, and other programs like it. Certainly there are many people who are destitude through no direct fault of their own, (though I would submit that even many of those in some way contributed to their plight by not doing what was right at every step of their lives.)

    But we set up these things to help people and it takes away the incentive for people to do better. When it is easier for an unwed mother to get food at a food bank than it is to pool resources with four or five other unwed mothers, go back to school, and get a good job, then we are only facilitating the Doomed as they wallow in their own stupidity, incompetence, or laziness.

    We have opened up our assistance programs to far too many people and it has knocked the wind out of our whole society.

  • Steve Crisp Nov 21, 2007

    Oops. My error. That should have been $16 per hour with any basic education.

    If you are in high school, you should be making at least $7 to $9 per hour at a part time job. With a diploma, the going rate is between $10 and $14 per hour. With some college, you jump to $15 to $20 per hour. College graduates start at perhaps $22 per hour and run to $30 or so -- and that includes teachers who pull in starting about $25 an hour. Professional trades people can easily gross $30 to $50 per hour depending on the trade. And remember, those are starting salaries or ones that you would make after proving yourself for three to six months.

    The only people who are actually making minimum wage or close to it (again not counting those still in high school or working part time jobs in college) are the Doomed who are content to run a fry vat or blow lawn clippings for the rest of their lives.

    There is very little excuse for an intelligent, hard working person to not be comfortable if not successful.

  • lornadoone Nov 21, 2007

    "That's $2,200 per month take home." Incorrect. I make above $12/hr, and the $2200 is BEFORE taxes. I'm not disclosing anymore about my personal finances or my situation, but just know that I manage them very well, and it's a struggle. Not everyone can fit into the mold you just described.

  • Steve Crisp Nov 21, 2007

    Do you know what I find is the single, biggest impediment keeping women from being successful?

    Their idiot boyfriends.

    It is more important to have that social life, and a social life I might add that overwhelmingly will not last with that specific person, than it is to go to school, study, or work two or more jobs to improve ones lot in life.

    I know one girl who has a fine job with the state, but is always complaining that she has no money after her bills are paid. I have offered to give her a job, but she can't manage to find the time because her "boyfriend" comes first. He would get mad if she worked at night and on the weekends. She will never change and she will find herself in 40 years with little to show for it.

  • Steve Crisp Nov 21, 2007

    I could sit down with you for hours and do a complete analysis and financial program that involves even the smallest detail. I can show you just how you can go to school and work, getting a degree of marketable trade in four to six years or far less. I can teach you how to budget money, save, and live in relative comfort will you work towards your eventual goal.

    But I'd be wasting my time. I have done that for dozens and dozens of people over the years. And if they had followed my recommendations, they would now be successful and well off. But they would rather:

    Compiain how hard it is.

    Bail because it takes too long to accomplish.

    Continue in their old lifestyle, spending money they do not have for things they do not need.

    And a hundred other reasons.

    Then I get to pay their bills via my taxes.

  • Steve Crisp Nov 21, 2007

    To lornadoone:

    Please spare me the histrionics.

    Single. No kids. If you have any education at all, you should be making at least $12 per hour. That's about $400 per week after taxes. Then add a 20 hour per week part time job and you have another $150 per week. That's $2,200 per month take home.

    Household expenses chew up one-fourth of that or about $550. Wait, you tell me that there is no way you can find an apartment that cheap? Well, you're single with no kids. How about the whole concept of roommates? Car payment and expenses of $300 per month, insurances of about $300 per month, and that leaves you $210 per week for other expenses, or $185 if you are putting away $25 per week.

    Now if you have children, then you should have a two-income family, right? If not, why did you either marry that slime or why did you have children in the first place?

    And if you do not have college, then there are tons of finacial aid programs to help you with your new career.

  • lornadoone Nov 21, 2007

    "Are you trying to tell me that even taking a part time job working four hours at minimum wage every Saturday and earmarking it specifically for retirement is beyond most people?"

    Unless you've walked in that person's shoes, you have no idea what they can/can't afford to do. I'm single, middle-class and I struggle to put anything away each month for retirement. Yes, I do a WEEKLY budget and I am very conservative with spending. $25/week is actually quite a bit to some people and I can't imagine doing it with children. And spare me the "you choose the financial state you're in" junk, because some people don't have any other option than to work a middle-class job.

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