We meet Vincent with his two sons at his local food pantry. He loves his kids more than anything. Vincent Jr. rambunctiously waits for their shopping cart to be filled with food. He runs into his older brother Tylen and laughs. Vincent asks the food pantry volunteer if they have any diapers his family can have, but Vincent Jr. interjects, “I want cookies!” There is never a dull moment in their household.

But having a large family with five young children isn’t easy — bills accumulate quickly. Vincent was injured several years ago and broke multiple fingers but still tries his best to support his family. Sometimes he works 12-hour-days as a handyman. His wife is working hard to earn her GED so she can apply for higher-paying jobs to better support their family. 

“I do everything for the kids,” says Vincent. “We don’t come here to be greedy or selfish; we do what we can to survive for the kids.”

Vincent’s family receives food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), but because of the benefits reduction earlier this year, their budget does not stretch as far as it once did. When they need a bit of help, the food pantry provides them with groceries, cleaning products, and other essential items that SNAP doesn’t cover. The pantry helps alleviate stress for Vincent, knowing the money he makes can go toward their rent and utilities.

Vincent is so grateful for the food program and for the kind people that support local hunger relief. “It’s amazing that people care and want to help."