TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A community lifeline is in desperate need of help. Metropolitan Ministries is running critically low on essential food items and they’re asking the community for help.
“This market has actually helped me a lot. If it wasn’t for it, I wouldn’t be able to survive during the summertime,” Latasha Walker said.
She went to Metropolitan Ministries not expecting to see the bare shelves in the Tampa market.
“It’s hard because this used to be my spot to help me during the summer times. But they don’t have much to help with now.”
This is the reality for many of the shoppers, who depend on the organization’s supply. James Dunbar, with Metropolitan Ministries, said not having a fully stocked warehouse with necessary food is tough.
“This particular site serves anywhere from five to 600 families a month, and we have two more sites like this. In addition to that, we supply food boxes for high-need communities.”
This is why the organization needs your help to restock.
“We have zero beans. We have zero starches. Our meats are at a critical low. Vegetables are at a critical low. Soups have been hard to source for the last year or so.”
Dunbar told 8 On Your Side they’ve never been in a bind like this one. He said many of their longtime partners and supply chain companies are either delayed or no longer taking bulk orders.
“Some of it is probably scarcity. Some of it is probably fear of them wanting to keep their own shelves stocked. Our struggle is we can’t even purchase it.” Dunbar said. “Without this product, it’s a struggle to provide, as they have before.”
If you want to donate, you can drop off food at any of the Metropolitan Ministries locations. You can find them on Metropolitan Ministries | Helping At-Risk And Homeless In Tampa Bay (metromin.org).