Many people saw a decrease in their Bridge Card benefits beginning on November 1 due to cutbacks in the federal Food Assistance Program (FAP).
Now that families are getting less money for food, area food banks are feeling the impact of more customers.
Luci Sintkowski, president of the Resurrection Conference at St. Vincent de Paul in Hancock, is trying to fill grocery bags with donations of food. She said there is always a use for more donations, but now is a time of dire need.
??Cutbacks at any time, whether it be winter, summer, is difficult on everyone,?? said Sintkowski. ??The needs are there 12 months of year, and they really need that money to sustain their families.??
According to the Department of Human Services, the decrease is due to ??the end of the extra benefits provided by the federal stimulus package?? of 2009.
St. Vincent de Paul has served over 3,000 people so far this year with free bags of food and money to pay utility bills.
Sintkowski is preparing for more people due to the cutbacks, though she said hasn??t seen much change just yet. She said the summer months, however, were telling of just how many people in the community are in need of service.
??The new people that were coming in have children that were school-aged, and we realized that the children received their breakfast and their lunch at school, and during the summer months, kids are home, they??re still hungry, they still need food,?? she explained.
She said St. Vincent de Paul is always in need of food and money donations, and all people are welcome for service.
??We??re here to help everyone, and I want to thank our wonderful community for helping us help others that are in need,?? Sintkowski said.
To read about the DHS FAP cuts, click here .