March Food Share month kick off with another successful Home Town Sampler. Some $28,000 was raised which was $2,000 over the goal and $1,000 over last year's sampler.

Around halfway through the month the Steele County Food Shelf is raised $90,273 and collected 29,216 pounds of food. March is important because of the potential for the local food shelf to receive matching funds. Last year around $20,000 came our way through this match. With its buying power the food shelf can supply a meal for just 23 cents.

Area food shelf usage is on the increase. In 2016 an average 530 households were served each month. In 2018 this increased to 723 households. With 1,350 households registered, 310 users last year were first time users. Here's an interesting number, just 103 households visited the Steele County Food Shelf all 12 months last year. This tends to point to many one time or two time users of the shelf. People who just need a jump start.

Donations may be dropped off at the Food Shelf on Oakdale in Owatonna during regular business hours.

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