They say numbers don’t lie.
Well, consider these numbers provided last week by Susan Johnson, director of Community Outreach Services of Paris, a non-profit agency that aids the underprivileged in northern Logan County.
“Our food demand is up dramatically,” she said.
“The numbers are between 150 and 200 people a month,” she said. “That’s up from last year. With the food we’ve got in our food pantry right now, we could probably do about six complete food baskets. We’ve exhausted all our resources.”
In order to help meet higher demand for food, Johnson is asking for help from the community.
COS needs an immediate influx of several food items. Items needed include canned vegetables such as peas, corn and green beans, canned pasta, spam, canned chili, chunky soups, boxed cereal with no sugar, canned fruit, and items like Hamburger Helper.
“Those items really build up our food baskets,” she said.
Johnson also cited several reasons why demand for food is rising. The still-lingering impact from the Great Recession is one. Another is the high cost of groceries and recent government cutbacks on food stamps.
COS has been getting meat from the USDA and donations of canned goods from CV’s Family Foods in Paris.
In addition to food, Johnson said COS needs donations of diapers — sizes four to six — and dried or powdered milk.
“If we’re not out of diapers, then we’re close,” she said.
To donate, drop off food at the COS office at 317 West Walnut, next to the Paris Area Chamber of Commerce. COS is open Monday from 9 a.m. until 2, Tuesday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., Wednesday from 9 a.m. until noon and Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m.
For additional information, contact COS by calling 963-3300.