Members of the Sigma Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority recently helped to purchase, bag and distribute grocery items to more than 100 citizens at the Tiftarea Food Bank in Tifton. The sorority has pledged to continue to support this organization that serves so many in Tifton and Tift County and encourages everyone to lend a helping hand also.
According to Kim Ezekiel, a member of the Board of Directors, the Tiftarea Food Bank operates under the direction of a Board of Directors and a staff of volunteers. The bank was established in 1984 and has been serving Tifton-Tift County for almost three decades. It is a 501(3) charitable nonprofit corporation that distributes food to those who have difficulty purchasing enough to avoid hunger.
According to President Nancy Holt, the most critical needs now are food items, volunteers, in-kind donations and a more suitable building to store and distribute food.
The Tiftarea food bank has seen a dramatic increase in families needing help compared to this time last year. Within the past year, the food bank has served over 4,000 individuals – many of them were senior citizens. These numbers are just a rough estimate. There have been many times the food bank ran out of food because it did not have neither sufficient funds to purchase food or donations of food items.
The food bank receives referrals from all the agencies that serve people who are in dire need; however, because of the limited amount of funds and food donations, the food bank is open only one day a month. As donations increase, the bank will be able to help citizens more regularly.
The only funds that the food bank receives are from dues that the Board of Directors gives each month and donations from a very small group of local supporters. The average monthly income for the bank is approximately $200.