Interfaith Council gifts Our Lady’s Pantry with $10,000 to feed the hungry

“For so many years already, the Interfaith Council has been feeding thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children by means of their generous donations to Our Lady’s Pantry,” says director Tom Bullaro.

“And now, once again, they have gifted us with $10,000 to buy food.”

According to Bullaro, this gift of $10,000 is more important than ever, today.  This is because the Pantry used to get most of its food from Feeding Tampa Bay (FTB) at reduced prices.  But now FTB is sharing food with 400 other pantries in surrounding counties.  This means there is less food to go around.  Our Lady’s Pantry now purchases most of its food from venders at regular retail prices.

Three women and a man holding what appears to be a check

“They don't give us any discount,” Bullaro says.  “While some vendors offer us reduced prices for huge orders, we are unable to take them up on that offer, because our Pantry is so small.  We have no room to store this food.

“We hope to one day have a stand-alone pantry with lots of space, which will enable us to purchase bulk amounts of food at reduced prices.  Until that happens, we must pay these higher prices.”

A recent survey by Feeding Tampa Bay (FTB), released on April 19, 2023, found that one million people are struggling with food insecurity in the Tampa Bay area.  This means that one-in-four children is impacted by food insecurity, which potentially affects their health and well-being.  The demand for food is at an all-time high, too, FTB says, even more than during the pandemic.

“This gift from the Interfaith Council has been made possible by proceeds from the Nearly New Shop,” Bullaro says. “We thank each individual, who has ever purchased items from this shop.

“Indirectly, you have put food on someone’s table today.”