The food shelf has been an asset in communities across the Redwood Area for years, as those in need are provided a place where they can receive food during the tough times.
While demand has fluctuated over the years, the reality is today there is a great need across the area, as demand at food shelf locations is on the rise.
According to Gary Revier, nearly 12,000 pounds of food was distributed in November through the Redwood Area Food Shelf, and more than 500 people were served – including more than 200 children and several senior citizens in the area.
The story is the same in Wabasso where the Wabasso Wafers food shelf is also seeing an increase in demand.
Carol Lanz, who works at the Wabasso food shelf said they have noticed more food is going out these days.
She added as an aside the Wabasso Wafers food shelf could really use additional freezer space to better serve those who are in need.
“I would love to figure out how to get more freezer space, so we could offer more protein to the people who come,” said Lanz.
While figuring out how to make that happen, the food shelf and many others like it also need food items, and an annual event held in the area might be able to help with that need.
The ninth annual Freezin’ for Food food shelf drive is being held this week starting Wednesday and continuing through Friday afternoon.
According to Tina Klinkner, who helps to coordinate the event, the goal is to collect 20,012 pounds of food in 2012.
One year ago, 25,622 pounds of food was donated and distributed.
Donations can be dropped off at several locations in the area, including:
• Kohls-Weelborg Ford in Redwood Falls
• Walmart in Redwood Falls
• The Redwood Area Community Center in Redwood Falls
• Becker’s Super Valu in Morgan
• Salfer’s Food Center in Wabasso
• B&D Market in Olivia
Klinkner said the RACC and Walmart drop-off sites are new this year, and she added those who coordinate the event appreciate all who are willing to serve in that way for the food drive.
Klinkner also said there are a number of local businesses and individuals who are going to be on hand during the three-day event to help those dropping off donations. She said those volunteers really help to make the event a success.
A special event is taking place Thursday night. From 6 until 7:30 p.m. the Red-wood Falls Fire Department is going to have one of its trucks at Kohls-Weelborg Ford, and North Ambulance is going to have one of its ambulances there, too.
Page 2 of 2 - “This is a chance for people to come in to make their donations and then to meet our emergency crews,” said Klinkner.
The food drive continues until 3 p.m. Friday, and from there those involved with Freezin’ for Food are going to distribute what has been donated to the food shelf locations including: the Redwood Area Food Shelf, Wabasso Wafers, We Care in Morgan, the Renville County Food Shelf and the Lower Sioux Food Agency.
For the convenience of those who are planning to make donations, Tersteeg’s in Redwood Falls is going to have pre-packaged items available for purchase.
While the purpose is to provide food for the food shelf locations, and all nonperishable items are being taken, one may also drop off cash donations.
Those donations actually can do a lot of good, as food shelf organizers are able to leverage those dollars to obtain more food than one might be able to purchase and donate on their own.
Helping to restock area food shelf locations is the goal of Freezin’ for Food, and those who volunteer at those sites would tell you those donations really make a difference – especially at this time of the year.
Having food on the table is not a reality for all people. Making a donation during Freezin’ for Food this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday can help make that more of a reality for more people in our area.