Harvest Hope still seeing high demand ahead of holidays

By Jillian Capobianco - bio | email

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - The Harvest Hope Food Bank continues to have a high demand for help, and with thanksgiving fast approaching, the need is especially great. Organizers are asking people to open their hearts and cabinets for the holidays.

For Viola Brown, food is her calling. She was an executive chef for years, so it's fitting that she donates her time at Harvest Hope Food Bank.

But Brown is not just a volunteer -- she's also a client. "Sometimes the ends just don't meet the needs," she said.

Viola had to quit her job because she got severely ill. She had seven surgeries in a matter a months, and lost her legs. For someone who spent her life working, needing help is not easy. "Because you can't do what you use to do," said Brown.

Viola says the holidays are particularly hard. Harvest Hope CEO Denise Holland says although they have seen a slight increase in donations, they are seeing just as much need this year as they did last year during the recession.

"The lines are still very long outside and if they're long where in general we're seeing some improvements, we can type trend that to mean long and longer lines when school is out and the holidays," said Holland.

Denise and Viola hope people can open up their hearts and pantries and donate this season. "It's a very worth while cause because there's a lot of people who need the services they provide," said brown.

Harvest Hope welcomes monetary donations to help purchase food. They are also accepting donations of frozen turkeys at their Shop Road and 12th Street locations.
This weekend, there will also be an event to benefit Harvest Hope. Sunday is the second annual Rockbridge Bazaar on Rockbridge Road in Columbia. There will be 40 vendors at the event. You can get in with a canned food donation or one dollar entry fee. To find out more, call 803-622-8345.

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