CLAY COUNTY, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Many families are wondering how they’re going to put food on the table amid some of the highest inflation that the country has ever seen.

In Clay County, many people are turning to food pantries as an option for food.

St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry President Patrick Hardman said that he’s seen a roughly 15% increase in people looking for assistance.

“Our demand is up maybe 10% to 15% because we’re actually up to an average of 70 families per week,” Hardman said.

Hardman went on to say that many families meet federal standards set to receive help from food pantries. For example, a family of 4 who makes $51,338 or less qualifies to receive help, and Hardman said that many families in the area fall in this threshold.

“So if you fit those,” Hardman explained. “You can walk out of here with probably 75 to 80 pounds of food.”

The Clay County Emergency Food Pantry is experiencing high demand for food as well. CEO Mike Robinson pointed out that reduced access to SNAP benefits and high inflation as the probable causes for this.

“America is full of food, no one should go hungry,” Robinson said.

Robinson said that they’re seeing roughly a 25% increase in people looking for assistance. He explained that he’s seeing plenty of new faces, particularly senior citizens. This is demographic that Robinson explained as who that does not normally seek help, but tough times are changing that mindset.

“They were brought up like, ‘You don’t ask for help,'” Robinson said. “We’re at the point nowadays where they need help.”

Both Hardman and Robinson spoke high praise of Terre Haute Catholic Charities. They both share the belief that it’d be difficult to keep their operations going without the help and assistance from Catholic Charities.

Robinson also credited the work and support of the Clay County community as they recognize the need.

“Clay County is a very giving community,” Robinson said. “People who are in Clay County are very good about trying to help out.”

St. Vincent de Paul is open on Tuesday’s from noon to 2:00 p.m. They also do deliveries, but orders for deliveries must be made by 10 a.m. that day. For assistance, you can call 765-848-8252.

The Clay County Emergency Food Pantry is open Monday thru Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and the only requirement is that you bring a piece of identification with your address listed on it.