Pacoima-based nonprofit Mend has seen a decrease in food donations

Officials with the nonprofit Mend have seen a decrease in food donations and say inflation is part of the cause.

Amanda Palacios Image
Tuesday, August 23, 2022
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Officials with the Pacoima-based nonprofit Mend have seen a decrease in donations at their weekly food distributions and say inflation is part of the cause.

PACOIMA, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- More people, less food. That's what officials with Mend, or Meet Each Need with Dignity, say is happening.

The nonprofit offers programs and resources to those living in poverty.

Every Tuesday and Friday, Mend hosts a food distribution in Pacoima. Although they're getting donations, they say they need more.

"We're providing to the community veggies as well as fruits and dry good boxes provided to us by the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank," said Mend Program Manager David Hernandez. "And we are looking for way more opportunities to purchase food and give it back to our community."

Hernandez says about 350 people show up to each giveaway. And while he says those numbers are going up, the amount of food donated is going down, with officials pointing to inflation as the main cause.

"We are feeding a lot of people, more people than we usually do most likely because the cost of produce and gasoline and other costs of living increases," said Mend volunteer Art Salter.

"I think when we go to the stores, we see you know, how everything has increased," said Mend Program Director Maggie Gregor. "And we're having to make choices, you know, whether it's changing the brand we buy, or perhaps buying less, and we're seeing that with our participants."

Mend is asking people to donate non-perishable items such as canned goods or to donate on their website at mendpoverty.org.

"If you can donate, definitely donate. We take a lot of donations from the community around here and businesses," said Mend volunteer Michael Licudine. "It helps us out. It's really a great cause and it really does make you feel great."

"We pride ourselves in ensuring that our food boxes are bountiful and that they have the items that we have in our own homes," Gregor said. "That it has protein, that it has fresh fruits and vegetables, that it has those dry goods that we're able to make nutritious meals with. So, we continuously need donations to come in."

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