Salvation Army food pantry paltry

By Tammy Keith Originally Published July 14, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.
Updated July 12, 2013 at 10:03 a.m.
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Tammy Keith

Capt. David Robinson, corps officer for The Salvation Army in Conway, looks at the meager offerings in the organization’s food pantry. Robinson said summer is a hard time for families because children are out of school, and more food is needed.

The cupboard is almost bare.

The food pantry at The Salvation Army in Conway has dwindled to almost nothing.

“This is the first time in a long time I am empty,” said Debbie Hendrix, social services director.

Hendrix, who has worked there five years, said she is handing out food bags with what she has.

“I just apologize: ‘I’m sorry, that’s all I’ve got,’” she said.

“It kind of hit me all at once,” Hendrix said.

The shelves were empty except for canned fruit and a random can or two of artichoke hearts, emergency meals from The American Red Cross, some cereal, a few frozen TV dinners and diapers.

“Usually, I have six varieties of canned goods, pasta, beans,” Hendrix said. “I have never not had canned goods.

“I have bread in the freezer, but I’m down to 10 loaves, probably.”

Hendrix said she had some cereal, thanks to Birch Tree Communities in Conway, which held a drive.

Capt. David Robinson, the new corps officer, said he’d never seen the pantry that low when he visited the office before being hired, or since he got there in June.

“It’s been going out faster than it’s coming in,” Robinson said.

The situation for families is tougher during the summer.

“Lots of kids are home, so people are needing more food at home,” Robinson said.

He said it would be nice to have snack items for children, in addition to the basics.

Hendrix said items needed include peanut butter, canned meat such as tuna or chicken, beans, pasta, rice and cereal.

Robinson said he would like to have a consistent supply of food.

“We need something steady — every quarter,” he said.

The food pantry is in the offices at 2125 Harkrider St. in the North Plaza shopping center and is open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Senior writer Tammy Keith can be reached at (501) 327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

Niche Publications Senior Writer Tammy Keith can be reached at 501-327-0370 or tkeith@arkansasonline.com.

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