Food Pantry looking for more donations and new director

Sunday, September 21, 2014
Judy Miller

The Putnam County Emergency Food Pantry is desperately in need of funding and food donations. And very soon, a new director.

As of Wednesday, the pantry has served 466 adults and 264 children with a total number of households at 241 -- the equivalent to 6,570 meals.

This year the pantry has given out 76,923 meals which is 16,000 more meals than in 2012.

"We realize that everyone is faced with the higher costs of living and we also know from our own experiences of grocery shopping that the cost of food rises each time we visit the grocery store," Food Pantry director Judy Miller said. "Therefore we know it is harder for you to donate. We also realize that we cannot keep our doors open without help."

The Putnam County Emergency Food Pantry is located at 309 E. Franklin St., one block north of City Hall, in the Beyond Homeless building.

The pantry has been making certain changes to try and save costs and help more people in the area, including shortening the number of days it is open to two days a week.

"Please know that we use donations of cash very carefully when we purchase needed items that are not donated," Miller said. "We have deleted items that we have purchased in the past to try and make cash last longer. We also try to limit the visits to the pantry as much as possible. Some who come to us only have $400 a month to live on. They seem to get along with only coming three to four times per year. I do not know how they do it but they seem to be able to make it."

Miller said the pantry also has to make the difficult decision of limiting visitors to two times a month, depending on circumstances.

Recipes are given out to go with some of the items available. The pantry gladly accepts cash donations but really believes that donations of fresh vegetables go a lot further in helping the people of Putnam County.

Everyone who works at the Putnam County Emergency Food Pantry is a volunteer and no one is paid.

While she says she enjoys the work dearly, Miller, the 2012 Putnam County Citizen of the Year, will be leaving the Food Pantry after 16 years of service to the community as director.

"I want to say that the 16 years that I have spent working here has been wonderful," Miller said, "and that I thank each and of you for your help and your comments.

"I will miss seeing helping and begging all of you," she added. "I have made many friends through my work. You have all become family to me."

Anyone wishing to work as a director or co-director for the Food Pantry should contact a board member or leave contact info at the pantry.

The Putnam County Emergency Food Pantry's hours are 9 a.m. to noon Monday and Tuesday.

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  • It 16,000 more meals , not 1600. This was probably my mistake in the interview. Sorry about that. Judy Miller, Director

    -- Posted by momma-j on Sun, Sep 21, 2014, at 10:13 PM
  • Thank you Judy for your tireless efforts over these years and spending lots of your own time in organizing the food pantry. Thank you for caring about the people.

    -- Posted by Sunshine507 on Mon, Sep 22, 2014, at 7:06 AM
  • It has been a labor of love and thanksgiving for me.

    I know that I will miss everyone but it is time for me to let someone else experience this great work of feeding the many hungry.

    Thank you Sunshine507.

    -- Posted by momma-j on Mon, Sep 22, 2014, at 10:26 PM
  • Judy Miller will be hard to replace- her caring heart and generous giving to the people of Putnam County are much appreciated!

    -- Posted by talkymom3 on Thu, Sep 25, 2014, at 2:14 PM
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