Catholic Charities urge community food donations amidst shortage


It’s hard times at a local organization, and Catholic Charities said they are not alone. Hunger is more prevalent than ever in Omaha, but donations at this food pantry are running dry.

“We are in real need of additional food donations so we can provide for those who are coming to Catholic Charities,” said Catholic Charities’ Dave Vankat.

Lines are still full of Nebraskans in need at Catholic Charities’ food pantry. However, shelves sit empty.

“We get all of our food through the donations that we see,” said Vankat, adding that lifting locals out of hunger is more challenging than ever. “What we get we are passing along to those who are coming to us in need.”

They are just not getting as much. Donations are down 38 percent, while the pantry is providing for 58 percent more people than last year.

“We have to make the food that we have stretch farther, so everybody who is coming to us is getting a little less food than we would typically pass out,” said Vankat.

To put those numbers in perspective, Catholic Charities reports serving 260,000 people over the past twelve months.

“Not since I’ve been with Catholic Charities, we haven’t seen this kind of shortage,” said Vankat, who blames the pandemic and inflation for the barren shelves. “There’s less money that people have to provide for themselves and so that translates to those who are in true food insecurity.”

A catch-22; with higher inflation comes lower donations, as hunger in Omaha is only intensifying.

“People just aren’t getting as much as they would to be able to nourish their families, which leads to other issues like anxiety and stress and mental illness, things like that,” said Vankat.

You can drop off donations at 5211 S 31st St., Monday through Friday from 1-3pm.

Story Courtesy of KETV:

Non-Discrimination Statement Catholic Charities Domestic Violence Services prohibits discrimination in all its programs, services, and activities. Services will not be denied to victims of sexual, domestic, or dating violence based on race, sex, gender identity, or gender expression, perceived or actual sexual orientation, age, color, religion, marital status, national origin, disability, socio-economic status, health status, HIV status, employment status, immigration status, or geographic location.

Skip to content