The Marion County Emergency Food Bank received a lot of crucial local support in 2011, volunteer Pat Smith said Tuesday.
Many people, businesses, churches, schools, and other organizations donated dry goods, canned foods, and perishables like meat, butter, and eggs throughout the course of the year, allowing the food bank to help families going through tough times.
The Christmas season was an especially positive time for the food bank. Many organizations donated food rather than having gift exchanges, Smith said.
With the economy in a slump, the food bank sometimes had as many as 18 families request food in a session. The food bank is open 9 a.m. to noon Mondays and Thursdays and is located at the northwest corner of Valley United Methodist Church in Marion.
To receive food from the food bank, someone in need must have a referral from a local church, senior center, or Marion County Health Department. Smith said the food bank gets referrals from all over the county.