PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - In a typical month, the Salvation Army offices in Pascagoula and Gulfport provide food for about 500 families through the organization's food pantry program. In just three days last week, more than 430 families received help. As you can imagine, that has left the cupboards nearly empty.
Hurricane Isaac's three day onslaught along the coast two weeks ago is the reason.
"We've been extremely busy for the last several weeks anyway since the storm," Captain Andy Bailey said. "Just been inundated with families and the needs are great right in our community right now."
For those that receive this gift of nourishment, it brings a certain piece of mind. Just ask Paul Rea.
"It means to me that I have food, it relaxes me, it keeps the worry off me," Rea said. "It's one thing I don't have to worry about."
The Salvation Army depends on donations to feed the hungry. Will those donations be coming in during this time of need? Bailey has no doubt.
"They always do, because this is a caring and giving community."
For the volunteers who work in the kitchen at the Salvation Army in Pascagoula, there's no better feeling in the world than helping someone who might otherwise go hungry. One of those volunteers is Russell Moore, who has received help himself in the past.
"You can't ask for no more a better feeling than to help somebody in need," Moore said. "I was always taught when I was raised that you're supposed to help other people that are less fortunate than you."
When clients do leave with bags of food, they all feel the same way, Bailey said.
"Grateful that today there will be food on the table and will be food on the table for the next several days."
If you'd like to donate non perishable food items, you can drop them off at the Salvation Army offices on Nathan Hale Avenue in Pascagoula, or in downtown Gulfport.