The aptly named It's Spooky to be Hungry food drive this year couldn't have a more prophetic name.
Columbia County and the Augusta area thus far are weathering the economic tidal waves of uncertainty lapping across the country. But that doesn't mean they aren't being felt here.
It's certainly being noticed by the area's charities. Michael Firmin, executive director of Golden Harvest Food Bank, recently noted that his agency is getting hit in two directions: The economic crunch not only is cutting the amount of food they receive from manufacturers; it's also increasing demand from families needing help.
"We're squeezed from both sides and caught in the middle," Firmin says.
Golden Harvest is the major supplier to the Columbia County Cares food pantry and 300 other food pantries in Georgia and South Carolina. Lou Reda, the director of Columbia County Cares, recently echoed Firmin by noting their supply of food and funds have been squeezed even as demand is rising.
The It's Spooky to be Hungry food drive won't solve those problems all by itself, though it certainly will help - but only with a big-hearted effort from the entire community.
Spooky, which now operates under the Golden Harvest umbrella, has grown since its humble beginnings in three Columbia County neighborhoods to become the agency's largest single annual food drive. And every bit of food and every bit of money collected in the drive goes to feed families.
Columbia County has a special stake in the food drive's continued success, and our community's success means we have plenty to share with those who have less.
To the extent you can, please be generous for this week's drive. Despite our uncertain times, no one needs to learn that it really is spooky to be hungry.
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