PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Every day Daniel Bush puts a smile on hundreds of South Mississippians' faces when he brings a hot meal to their door. Bush has been driving Our Daily Bread's van for a year now. His tour of duty began when the economy started sinking, and hundreds of hungry families began seeking assistance.
"People are out of work and they need food," Bush said.
The demand for food is worrying Director Edwin Quave. He points out that last month Our Daily Bread delivered nearly 5,000 meals in Jackson County, and fed another 2,600 people at its main kitchen.
"I would say it has been about a 50 percent increase. When we don't get donations, we have to foot the bill," Quave said.
Picking up the tab is costly during this financial slowdown. For example, Quave says January's budget was just $3,000.
"Out of that $3,000, we have to pay the employees, the upkeep on the vans costs us a bit, and utensils and stuff like that. A lot of times we end up with nothing," Quave said.
Despite the lack of funds, Our Daily Bread workers say they refuse to put the brakes on the delivery program, and they're hoping more donations roll in to keep the program running.
"If we miss one meal, that person is going to call and ask what's wrong. We ask the community to continue to donate monetary and food as well. If we get more monetary donations, that can help a lot."
The extra help would allow Our Daily Bread workers to keep feeding the needy.