It may come as no great surprise, but it should still be alarming:
In all, more than 106,600 people received help from MANNA partner agencies at least once in 2009. More than 33,000 are children. The report found that 84 percent of respondents didn't know where they would get tomorrow's meal and 76 percent of pantries have seen an increase in need.
Three employees were let go for the first time in Mission Ministry's history, said Bill Warren, with the nonprofit in Marion. He's working the front lines of what he calls a “pandemic of poverty.” “But when you go and you look into the eyes of that person face to face and say, ‘I'm out of food today, there is none … That's very painful,” Warren said. “You go home and you don't sleep well.”