COVID-19 causes increased assistance for local families

Vincent Marshall
Dodge City Daily Globe
Manna House in Dodge City is seeking donations to replenish its food pantry.

Helping those in need has come naturally to Manna House director Steve Tabor.

Tabor has been the director of the facility since December 2020, when he returned to the position after the death of director Mike Hoar in November 2020.

Hoar took over for Tabor in 2019 after Tabor held the spot since 2014.

Now Tabor is looking for support from the community.

"We can always use food, whatever I get I give out," said Tabor. "Recently we had 19 families at one point come in, in need in one day so we go through quite a bit of food."

In December 2020, Dodge City Middle School and Comanche Middle School held a food drive competition where the schools combined to donate 7,071 food items. However, due to the increased need from COVID-19, the food pantry is needing replenished.

According to Tabor, some of the specific food items needed are pancake mix and syrup, crackers, canned tuna and chicken, cereal, peanut butter and hamburger helper.

"The kids, they grab vegetables and beans, so we just need extra food to fill a box and help a family," said Tabor.

Some other items can be egg cartons, bags, sacks, clean used or new blankets, sleeping bags, towels and other hygiene items.

Since 1993, the Manna House in Dodge City has been assisting families and individuals in need.

Along with shelter, the Manna House provides food assistance that has been donated from local churches, organizations and individuals.

Currently, the overnight shelter is closed due to COVID-19.

Since Tabor returned to the Manna House, the organization has been in search of a permanent director.

According to Tabor, some of the qualifications are the willingness to be able to help people, financing and keeping donations coming in and paying utilities.

"It's not a must, but if someone is able to write grants, that would be a plus," said Tabor.

For more information on becoming the Manna House director or for donation questions, call 620-227-6707.

The food pantry is open from 2 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Donations can be mailed to 1012 First St., Dodge City, Kansas, 67801.

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