Hunger is a huge problem in Southwest Florida.
The Harry Chapin Food Bank is feeding as many as 300,000 people every month, but they don’t do it alone.
Early in the morning, a line forms outside Adventist Community Services while inside volunteers start their day with prayer thankful to have enough food for those waiting.
In a small building, packed with food in downtown Cape Coral, volunteers fill carts one by one for as many as 800 people a week.
They are part of a network of more than 150 agencies around Southwest Florida working with the Harry Chapin Food Bank to feed people, people like Carlos and Maria.
“Well, I currently don’t have any jobs. So, I don’t have any income. So, I’m trying to survive right now,” Carlos said.
He left his family behind in Cuba and is waiting for work papers so he can make a life in the United States.
His filled grocery cart is more than he could have hoped for.
“This is incredible. Yeah, it’s, I don’t have to worry about food for a long time right now. I’m by myself, all this stuff is gonna last me forever,” he said.
Maria lives in Cape Coral for 10 years but with rising rent and food costs she’s having a hard time paying the bills.
“It’s very uncomfortable because I live on a disability check that it’s only $1,023 and I have to pay rent, light water, my car, my insurance, and my phone. So it’s very difficult,” Maria said.
The food is a tremendous help to her.
“They give you a lot of meat, you know, a lot of bread. They’re very helpful, very nice, people very gentle inside, you know, so and they help everybody that comes in,” she said.
They feed children, retirees and working families with love and dignity.
“Oh, people are just so grateful. And we get kind words every single day. I don’t know what we would do without you guys. You don’t know the difference that you’re making,” said Alex with Adventist.
How to help the hungry in Southwest Florida
Help us raise $450,000 to put a million meals on the tables of hungry families in Southwest Florida.
You can donate by visiting our March to a Million Meals donation page.