As the price of gasoline and groceries continues to soar, social agencies are feeling the pinch more and more acutely. CNS reported on this back in May when gas was a mere $3.50 a gallon, unlike the current average national rate of $4.11 for a gallon of regular unleaded, according to a July 16 report from the motorist advocacy group AAA.
The Leaven, archdiocesan newspaper of Kansas City, Kan., focuses on the high price of food and gas in its July 4 issue. The story points out that many families are now forced them to ”make a terrible choice: food or fuel?” Local Catholic Charities agencies, it says, are seeing more people — especially those who have never been to food pantries before – come through their doors seeking help, as they struggle to make ends meet.
The surge comes at a bad time. In the summer, food pantries typically experience a decrease in donations and students are not in school to receive free lunches.
People need to step up to the plate and help, said a spokeswoman for Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas, urging people to volunteer at local service agencies, donate to food pantries or conduct food drives.