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Lines continue to grow at food banks as people seek help

Nearly 5,000 people last week in Southwest Florida asked food banks where they can find essential items.

“It’s really concerning to see the lines growing and to see more and more people starting to struggle,” said Megan, who volunteers with the Boys and Girls Club.

Volunteers have been called on to lend a hand as the number of people in need continues to rise.

“Now I am volunteering at least twice a week,” said Marcela Romelo.

Arlene Adams-Hardoin volunteers at Harry Chapin Food Bank, and on Friday, she was handing out bagged meals.

“This has been nothing we ever expected,” she said. “We’re serving over twice as many people.”

Harry Chapin Food Bank spokesperson Mary Wozniak said they’ve seen about an 80 percent increase in people that need food.

“They don’t how to pay their bills or their mortgage, and then of course, there’s feeding their families.”
Volunteers on Friday helped feed more than 400 families.
Others gave thanks at NCH, showing their appreciation to the hardworking nurses and doctors.

“My wife and I, our neighbors and good friends behind us, their pediatrician just passed away from coronavirus, so everybody knows somebody,” said Tony Katz of Naples.

He and other Naples neighbors donated $7,000 to feed those on the frontlines.

“It’s fantastic; it really shows that the community that we’re here to care for really appreciates us,” said Chris Raphael, administrative director of critical care at NCH.

Volunteers will feed students on Saturday morning at the Boys and Girls Club. They’ll serve breakfast and lunch to children under 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. – or until the food runs out.

Parents, just bring your child’s school ID.

Reporter:Gina Tomlinson
Writer:Jackie Winchester
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