Coronavirus Increases Hunger: Find A Food Bank In Will County

·5 min read

WILL COUNTY, IL — When you look around Will County, it's easy to see the effects the coronavirus has had on our way of life. What's less visible is the number of people who are now worrying about having enough to eat.

Feeding America, the nation's largest hunger relief organization, says coronavirus-related economic crises could push the number of food insecure Americans to 54 million by year's end. That's 17 million more Americans than who were food insecure before the pandemic. For some, it's a matter of running short on grocery money before the week is out and eating a lot of boxed pasta and rice dishes.

For others, food insecurity means real hunger.

In Will County, 42,120 people, or 6.1 percent of the county's population, were considered food insecure before the pandemic, according to Feeding America's "Map the Meal Gap" interactive study.

Job loss and other economic crises associated with the coronavirus could push the rate of food insecurity in Will County to 11.2 percent by the end of the year.

Feeding America, whose 200 member food banks include the Greater Chicago Food Depository in Chicago, reports both higher demand for services and more need for volunteer and donor support.

Some food pantries and other services available in Will County are:

Bolingbrook

  • 4KIDS Sake Food Pantry, 192 Lily Cache Lane, Bolingbrook

Braidwood

  • Community Care Center, 112 S. Center St., Braidwood

Channahon

  • Living Manna Food Ministry, 25124 S. Fryer St., Channahon

Crest Hill

  • Family Outreach Program, Inc., 1701 N. Larkin Ave., Crest Hill

Crete

  • Unity Kitchen, 1500 S. Sangamon St., Crete

Frankfort

  • Frankfort Township, 11000 W. Lincoln Highway, Frankfort

  • Peace Community Church, 21300 S. La Grange Road, Frankfort

Joliet

  • Blessing Bench Pantry, 55 W. Benton St., Joliet

  • Christ Temple Food Pantry, 212 Richards St., Joliet

  • Daybreak Shepherd's Table, 611 E. Cass St., Joliet

  • Fellowship Bible, 122 Morris St., Joliet

  • Forest Park Community Center, 1017 Woodruff Road, Joliet

  • Glory Tabernacle, 459 N. Ottawa St., Joliet

  • HEAL Riverwalk Food Pantry, 350 N. Broadway, Joliet

  • Lebanon Dist. Laymen Ministry, 402 Singleton Place, Joliet

  • Life Line Food Pantry, 100 McDonough St., Joliet

  • Life Spring/Iglesia Bethany Church Pantry, 1000 Hacker Ave., Joliet

  • Lively Hope Church of God, 308 N. Midland, Joliet

  • Morningstar Mission, 350 E. Washington St., Joliet

  • New Testament Fellowship, 515 N. Scott, Joliet

  • Ridgewood United Community Pantry, 301 Fairbanks Ave., Joliet

  • Sacred Heart - Family Table Soup Kitchen, 329 S. Ottawa St., Joliet

  • Salvation Army Joliet, 300 Third Ave., Joliet

  • Second Baptist Food Pantry, 156 S. Joliet St., Joliet

  • Soul Food Pantry, 2800 Black Road, Joliet

  • Spanish Community Center, 309 N. Eastern Ave., Joliet

  • St. John Lutheran Church, 2650 Plainfield Road, Joliet

  • St. John the Baptist Food Pantry, 260 Division St., Joliet

  • St. Patrick's Food Pantry, 710 W. Marion St., Joliet

  • Warren Sharpe Community Center, 454 S. Joliet St., Joliet

  • Will County Baptist Temple, 625 McDonough St., Joliet

Lockport

  • Fairmont Food Pantry, 525 Barry Ave., Lockport

  • First Baptist Church Pantry, 800 Thornton, Lockport

  • Lockport FISH Food Pantry, 604 E. Ninth St., Lockport

  • Shiloh Baptist Church Food Pantry, 18101 W. Oak Ave., Lockport

Manhattan

  • Christ's Mission Church, 22811 S. Cedar Road, Manhattan

Minooka

  • Minooka Bible Church, 412 N. Wabena Ave., Minooka

Monee

  • Action: Love Pantry, 6370 Emerald Parkway, Monee

  • Faith Baptist Church, 25800 S. Center Road, Monee

  • Jackson Creek Fellowship Church, 25800 S. Center Road, Monee

  • St. George Coptic Orthodox Church, Monee

New Lenox

  • Cornerstone Church of LW - Manna Food Ministry, 1501 S. Gougar Road, New Lenox

  • New Lenox Township Food Pantry, 1100 S. Cedar Road, New Lenox

  • New Life Church, 500 S. Gougar Road, New Lenox

Peotone

  • Helping Hands, 200 W. Crawford, Peotone

Plainfield

  • Plainfield Area Interfaith Food Pantry, 22525 W. Lockport St., Plainfield

  • Green Harvest Food Pantry, 25448 W. Ruff St.

Romeoville

  • Dupage Township, 241 Canterbury, Romeoville

  • Love Fellowship Baptist Church, 730 N. Independence Blvd., Romeoville

  • Romeoville Community Pantry, 2 Belmont Drive, Romeoville

  • We Care of Romeoville, 219 Arlington Drive, Romeoville

Shorewood

  • Restoration Christian Church, 114 Channahon St., Shorewood

University Park

  • Faith Movers Church, 425 W. Exchange St., University Park

Wilmington

  • Kuzma Care Cottage, 635 S. Main St., Wilmington

RELATED: Millions Made Hungry During Pandemic Could Include Your Neighbor

Food insecurity is often thought of as a “poor people’s problem,” but not all people living in poverty are food insecure, and not all food insecure people live in poverty. Food insecurity is a complex issue sandwiched in with other systemic challenges, including poverty, low wages, affordable housing shortages, chronic and acute health problems, high medical costs and social isolation.

“Our members are reporting that many of the people they’re serving have never sought food assistance before,” Kathryn Strickland, Feeding America’s chief network officer, told Patch. “Some people are reporting that people who formerly donated to food banks are now seeking assistance.

Patch has partnered with Feeding America to help raise awareness on behalf of the millions of Americans facing hunger. Feeding America, which supports 200 food banks across the country, estimates that in 2020, more than 54 million Americans will not have enough nutritious food to eat due to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. This is a Patch social good project; Feeding America receives 100 percent of donations. Find out how you can donate in your community or find a food pantry near you.


This article originally appeared on the Romeoville Patch