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You’re helping feed my children when the refrigerator is empty

You’re helping feed my children when the refrigerator is empty

My name is Norma, and I’m a single mother. Since I’ve been coming to this food pantry, my family hasn’t run out of food—but it hasn’t always been like that. Before we came here, I would run out of food stamps by the middle of the month. There would be days when we didn’t have anything. Sometimes it was a can of beans and some bread just to put something in their stomachs. School vacations are the hardest time of year because my kids get meals at school. In the summer, trying to provide three meals a day and snacks—sometimes it felt like I was drowning. It was a lot of pressure. I used to work nights at a factory, but when my husband left, I couldn’t afford the child care. I lost my job, and we ended up homeless, living in a shelter. Now we’ve found a home for all of us. I’m back at school working to get into a nursing program, but we struggle financially.

The food has changed our lives

The food we get here makes a big difference. It means I can stretch my food stamps to last me through the month and still make meals. We get fruits and vegetables, so we’re eating healthier. My kids are excited when I come here because they know the refrigerator will be full again. They may be skinny, but they eat a lot!

Before coming to the food pantry, Norma struggled to feed her children.

When your child opens the refrigerator and they don’t see anything, it’s depressing. They try not to show you, but you can see the sadness in their eyes, the hurt.

It helps them emotionally to see their refrigerator full of food. They go to school with a better attitude, and they’re more positive. I want to say thank you to the people who support the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank because it’s really stressful not to know if you’re going to be able to provide for your family. I’m very grateful for your generosity, for my family and everybody else who comes here. I’m sure you’re changing a lot of lives in the same way you’ve changed mine.

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