GREENWICH, Conn. — The Gisborne Room of Greenwich Town Hall was stocked with colorful packages of nonperishable food as residents came out to help those in need during Greenwich's Salvation Army food drive Thursday.
The food drive is held every summer because this is when food supplies get low, said Alison Brush, community gift program coordinator for the Department of Social Services. The amount of homes seeking food assistance has more than quadrupled recently, she said.
"Over the past few years, the number of homes on our list has gone from 75 to about 500," she said. "It could be anyone — families, singles, or women and children."
All proceeds help fill the Neighbor-to-Neighbor and Department of Social Services food kitchens, which Brush says serve about 350 homes every week.
"Today we're hoping to collect at least a ton of food, literally," she said. "A lot goes in and out every week."
In addition to edibles, cash donations were also expected. The largest donation was $2,600 from the Liuna Municipal Union, said Margaret E. Conboy, chairwoman for the Greenwich service unit of the Salvation Army. Cash goes toward buying more food throughout the year when supplies get low.
Deborah Lobelson, who works at Greenwich High School, said she saw a notice about the event on the school's bulletin board and thought it was a wonderful idea.
"I wanted to donate food because a lot of people don't have any, and I have too much," she said. Lobelson said she's certain she may know people who require food assistance but isn't completely sure.
Lobelson dropped off three plastic bags filled with pasta sauce and kidney beans.
Brush said she has seen a different crowd seeking food assistance in the past two years, and she blames the economy.
"I think the economy really hit some residents, and they don't realize it until they have nothing left," she said.