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Food pantry shines light on Northwest Louisiana's hunger problem - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Food pantry shines light on Northwest Louisiana's hunger problem

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Just behind the Webster Parish Courthouse you'll  now find one of Minden's oldest food banks. The Joe LeBlanc Food Pantry just relocated to a larger building to better serve the growing number of hungry in its area. Jessica Lewis, the pantry's director, says that's because the need for food has grown in the Minden area and her food bank isn't the only one expanding. 

"Just about every city in Webster, Parish has their own food pantry," Lewis said. "Each one, just from talking and having conversations with them, are going very rapidly just because of the need." Lewis' pantry feeds more than 150 Minden families alone. That's up from 30 in 2007.

"The same day that we pass out food, they're allowed to sign up," Lewis said. "The average about 12 new families each month."

The Food Bank of Northwest Louisiana provides food for Lewis and other pantries in the seven parish area. Its director Martha Marak says the number of hungry in Northwest Louisiana has grown. A total of 17 percent of the whole population is food insecure.

"The need is big. You know, a lot of the folks and families that we help are children," Marak said. "Twenty-four percent of the children that live in Northwest Louisiana are what we call food insecure. They don't have food at home."

With its new location, Lewis hopes her food bank help serve even more well into the future. The Joe LeBlanc Food Pantry is operated by the Christian Church at Minden.

 

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