Greensboro - The Greensboro Urban Ministry said it has received triple the food donations since the shelter sent out a public appeal for help last week, after a computer glitch caused problems for many people unable to get their EBT cards re-certified.
Greensboro Urban Ministry executive director Rev. Mike Aiken said specifically, the shelter has received about 3,000 pounds of food per day, as opposed to the average 1,000 pounds of food. Donors also have given $10,000 worth of cash to purchase food. The donations have made it possible for the ministry to give out an average of 2,740 pounds of food per day, though Rev. Aiken affirmed the increase in donations is just barely enough to meet that need. He encouraged community members to continue donating.
Greensboro Urban Ministry said it initially sent out the plea for help because it started seeing more than 90 families per day-double the usual number-coming to the shelter for emergency food services. The cause of the influx of families requesting the services has been partially attributed to a glitch in the program used to activate EBT cards with benefits.
Steve Hayes, assistant director for the Guilford Department of Social Services confirmed the Department of Health and Human Services said several of the software glitch problems have been fixed, and Hayes said he suspects local DSS personnel will work overtime this week to catch up on cases that were bypassed because of the glitch.
Kermit Moses, a temporary resident at the Greensboro Urban Ministry's Weaver House, said he will be reapplying for EBT card certification soon and is concerned the computer glitch will not be fixed. He said he has seen, first-hand, how many people rely on the food stamp cards and has seen the increase in the number of people who already come to the ministry for services during the summertime.
Aiken said if people wish to organize a food drive at a business or congregation, they should call the Urban Ministry Food Bank at 336-553-2672 or send a donation to Greensboro Urban Ministry, 305 West Lee Street, Greensboro, NC 27406.