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Pa. funding cuts have food pantries pleading for donations

July 09, 2012|By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — A state funding cut affecting Franklin County, Pa., food pantries is leading to a renewed plea for donations.

The state budget for 2012-13 reduces the annual allocation to South Central Community Action Programs’ food purchase program, SCCAP Executive Director Megan Shreve said.

That program supports SCCAP’s main food pantry in Chambersburg, as well as ones in Orrstown, St. Thomas, Fayetteville, Greencastle and Waynesboro, she said.

Franklin County received $141,000 for 2011-12 and will receive $123,000 for 2012-13, Shreve said.

“If we do not get increased donations, it’ll mean people will get less food,” she said Monday.

In 2011, the Franklin County program assisted 1,809 households and 4,618 individuals. It spent $68.41 per household that year, or $5.70 a month.

Participating families fill out forms regarding financial need.

State funding that would have gone to the food pantry is being diverted to the “supplemental food” program traditionally known for providing cheese and milk, Shreve said.

The food pantries use their state funding to buy reduced-cost, eligible foods that include pasta, peanut butter and canned vegetables, she said.

“We’re fortunate that there are groups that help us raise (additional) money and collect food,” Shreve said.

Backyard gardeners are encouraged to donate surplus produce this time of year.

“Getting fresh fruits and veggies is a treat for families,” Shreve said.

For more information about SCCAP’s food purchase program, call 717-263-5060 or go to 533 S. Main St. in Chambersburg.

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