Increased costs put Storehouse Community Food Pantry’s services at risk

Published 12:28 pm Friday, September 15, 2023

Due to inflation, many people have fewer dollars in their pocketbooks and fewer groceries in their cupboards.

Inflation has also taken its toll on the Storehouse Community Food Pantry, a local non-profit organization that distributes food to individuals and families requiring temporary assistance.

Donna Cowart, who serves as the treasurer for the food pantry, said without an increase in donations, the distribution of services will have to be altered.

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Currently, clients are allowed to take advantage of the food pantry six times a year, Cowart said, but due to the rising cost of food, existing funds cannot continue to support that level of service.

“A few years ago, clients could only come three times a year, but now they can come six times a year over a 12-month period,” she said.

If funding doesn’t increase, the food pantry will have to return to helping only three times a year.

“We will have to buy less and serve less,” Cowart said.

From January to August of this year, the Storehouse Community Food Pantry spent an average of $7,400 per month for food. With the monthly operating expenditures, 600 meals were provided weekly.

The Storehouse Community Food Pantry is open to the public on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, and Cowart said they typically serve 50 clients per day or 150 a week. On each visit, clients receive enough food for four days — a total of 600 meals per week.

Traditionally, the food pantry has also provided turkeys and hens for the holidays, but Cowart said there is a chance that may not happen this year without additional financial resources.

In addition to the rising cost of food, another issue plaguing the food pantry is its increased number of clients. Inflation has priced many people out of being able to support themselves, she said, and they now have to rely on help from others.

Giving also suffers with higher food prices, since fewer people are able to donate, Cowart said.

“Presently deposits are down, and spending is four times more than the money coming in,” she said.

While the food pantry would covet an increase in donations, Storehouse Community Food Pantry volunteer Jane Smith said they are appreciative of the people who support the organization.

“The food we distribute is supplied through donations — food and money — from public and private sources in our community,” Smith said. “We are so thankful for the support from local churches, businesses, schools, civic groups and individuals.”

People interested in donating can mail cash or checks to Storehouse Community Food Pantry, P.O. Box 820914, Vicksburg, MS, 39182; or by credit card or PayPal on the food pantry website:

Food donations can also be dropped off during food pantry hours, from 10 a.m. to noon on Mondays and Wednesdays, and from 5 to 6 p.m. on Thursdays at Traveler’s Rest Baptist Church, 713 Bowmar Ave.

Food items needed are provided on the Storehouse Community Food Pantry’s webpage at

For additional information, email or call 601-461-8269 during operating hours.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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