Real Stories of Hunger

Your Story: Lesly
North Carolina

As a stay-at-home mom of four, Lesly has cooking and grocery shopping down to a science. Though her husband works full time in construction, the family has to budget very carefully — and even when they do, it's hard to make ends meet.

"We don't qualify for food stamps," Lesly explains, "so, I come here and I get some food that helps a lot in my family."

With kids ages 12, 8, 3 and 2 months, Lesly's priority is making sure everyone gets three healthy meals a day, even if that means they have to skimp in other areas.

She explains that sometime she has to fall behind on her utility bills because "food is the priority." Where she's sacrificed "the lighting and things like that," she's adamant that "you always have to have food for the kids."

To supplement her monthly grocery shopping, Lesly comes to First Fruit Ministry at least once a week. "I come, I get the bread and when I go to the store I only have to buy the ham, the cheese, and I have the sandwich," she says.

Kyara, who's 8 years old and proud to be entering 3rd grade, says she comes along with her mom pretty often. She likes coming to First Fruit Ministry because it means her school lunchbox will be full of "apples, bananas and a sandwich."

A big fan of pizza and lasagna, Kyara likes to help out with the cooking at home, sometimes helping her mom bake cakes on special occasions.

Lesly is grateful that during the holidays, the food bank doesn't only have enough food, they provide seasonal, festive food so families can prepare nice holiday meals. "They always have something more special, because they know it's a holiday, she says.

"For Thanksgiving, they have turkey, and…the food of the season. They always have free turkey, so I only have to buy the rest of the stuff," she says.

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