Sevier County food pantry seeing high demand due to weather

Sevier County food pantry seeing high demand due to weather

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On Friday alone, 300 families stopped by the pantry. Volunteers worked hard to keep up with the number of people coming in. On Friday alone, 300 families stopped by the pantry. Volunteers worked hard to keep up with the number of people coming in.

SEVIERVILLE (WATE) – The cold weather has caused a surge of traffic at local food pantries and volunteers at Sevier County Food Ministries say they've seen some of the highest demand ever.

On Friday alone, 300 families stopped by the pantry. Volunteers worked hard to keep up with the number of people coming in.

"When they're at home, they eat quite a bit," said Debra Justice about her three kids, who were home for three snow days this week. "The school provides two meals a day for the kids. That's two meals they're not getting."

Last week already broke records for a non-holiday period. Volunteers say it's the area's economy. Monday brought concerns about the weather, high utility bills, and kids at home.

"The entertainment organizations have been laying people off because it's been a slow season for us," explained Mannie Burnett with Sevier County Food Ministries. "Out of the 617, 407 were families with children. So children are going through food, with this snow." 

He says more than 600 people stopped by on Monday.

With President's Day ahead and kids out of school again, they expect this trend of high demand to continue.

If you'd like to donate, call Sevier County Food Ministries at (865) 428-5182.

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