Charleston, WV (WOWK) — One of the most prominent soup kitchens in all of West Virginia is having serious problems in keeping food on the shelves. This is surprising because Manna Meal survived the demand from COVID-19 and the opioid epidemic, but now it’s in serious trouble.

For the past 48-years, Manna Meal in Downtown Charleston has provided free breakfast and lunch 365 days a year. But the agency also runs a food pantry, where people in need can come and get free groceries.

The problem is the demand has now exploded. During COVID-19, people received large increases in their SNAP or food stamp benefits. But back in March, SNAP benefits were reduced to pre-COVID levels, and so the need for free food has skyrocketed. Manna Meal needs help.

“Worst case scenario is that we would have to drastically reduce access to our pantry altogether. And on my watch, that’s not okay. On the board’s watch, that’s not okay. That’s sort of why we have sounded this alarm,” said Amy Wolfe, the Executive Director of Manna Meal.

Covenant House in Charleston, is also facing a similar food pantry shortage. If you would like to help, Manna Meal will accept donations of canned foods and other non-perishable food items.
and people can always make cash donations, by going to Manna Meal’s website.

Another reason given for the Manna Meal crisis is inflation. With most everyone paying a lot more for their own food, many people have less money to give to charities and non-profits.