It has become a national epidemic. As unemployment numbers rise, so does demand at area food pantries. Ironically many pantries are stocked by the same people, who are now turning to them for help. In South Lake Tahoe, increasing demand left the pantry at St. Theresa Catholic Church empty, forcing them to temporarily close their doors for the first time in 7 years.
The pantry is open every Tuesday and Friday between 1:30 PM and 3:00 PM. Ordinarily you can expect to see about 80 people lined up outside waiting to get help. This week though, the pantry was closed. Parish Secretary, Beverly Sass says she is seeing more new faces come to the church for help. “I’ve had grown men come into my office sobbing, because they’ve lost their jobs and can’t afford to feed their families,” says Sass. “It’s everywhere, including South Lake Tahoe.”
With growing demand, and no supplies the church reached out to parishioners for help this week. That, and an article in the Tahoe Daily Tribune have brought a surge in donations, keeping volunteers busy restocking the shelves. Sass is glad that the pantry will be able to reopen its doors as scheduled next week, and hopes that donations continue as summer comes to a close.
Food donations are accepted at the parish office located at 1041 Lyons Ave, in South Lake Tahoe between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM. For more information how you can give or get help, contact St. Theresa Catholic Church at (530) 544-3533.