During the holiday season, food pantries across the nation often find their shelves empty. Bismarck-Mandan is no exception.
"We are so busy and low on food," Karen Jans of Community Action said.
Community Action often struggles to keep the shelves stocked. Hamburger Helper meals, soup and canned fruit are especially in short supply. They receive many private donations, but they go quickly.
The other food pantries in the Bismarck-Mandan area are facing similar problems.
The Bismarck Emergency Food Pantry, one of the largest pantries in the area, is extremely busy. They have received numerous donations, but can always use more.
Aid Inc. also is experiencing shortages, especially hygiene products. They also are always short on sugar, salt and pepper.
"We are mostly in need of hygiene products," said Roxie Polzin of Aid Inc.
Polzin, in an Associated Press story, said she has seen more needy people this year.
"We have a lot more elderly people who need food because meds are so high," she said. She also sees more people who are injured and unable to work but have no insurance.
The Ruth Meiers Hospitality House also has a food pantry. They usually have holiday shortages. This year their shelves are nearly full, thanks to a huge food drive put on by the Girl Scouts.
A recent food drive has helped the Salvation Army restock its shelves. They usually have more shortages during the post holiday season, because people are more aware and giving during the holiday season.
"We have received marvelous community support," said Brenda Kriedeman of the Salvation Army.
While the pantries often see more needs during the holidays, they provide services all year. This means the pantries need donations throughout the year.
"Due to recent community support, our shelves are currently full, but we need donations all year round," said Michael Bommarito of the Salvation Army.