SENECA COUNTY, Ohio — The latest report by Feeding America finds 42 million people (1 in 8), including 13 million children (1 in 6) may experience food insecurity in 2021.
While that number is a slight improvement from the 2020 projection during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the organization found many people were impacted by the coronavirus and may be facing greater hardship.
Members of Leadership Seneca County are working to help.
"Every class has a leadership project," 2021 Leadership Seneca County graduate Tony Patrizi explains, "with COVID, we felt like we needed something that contributed to every single community because there were a lot of people in need."
The group built and installed about one dozen blessing boxes across Seneca County. The boxes are designed to hold non-perishable food and home supplies. Anyone can stop by and donate or take what they may need.
"It's also for those families that are struggling, that are living paycheck to paycheck," Patrizi says.
The boxes are spread out across Seneca County. Patrizi explains the locations are strategic, placing supplies where people may be able to walk to them.
"If you do have the opportunity to help someone out, you could make someone's night by simply dropping off $5 of food off at a local food pantry or one of our blessing boxes, it could make all the different for someone else," Patrizi says.
Blessing boxes are set up at the following locations:
- Bascom United Methodist Church
- Old Fort United Methodist Church
- First Call For Help
- New Riegel Town Hall - New Riegel, Ohio
- Bloomville Town Hall - Bloomville, Ohio
- Republic United Methodist Church
- Napoli's Pizza - Tiffin
- Thread Designs- Melmore
- Trinity United Church of Christ in McCutchenville
- Reflection Ministry - Bettsville
- Bethlehem Lutheran Church-Attica
- The Hair Place & Eagle Deli Mart