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      Local food pantries deal with rising need

      St. Lucy's food pantry / Jessica Cain

      More people than ever are depending on Central New York food pantries to make ends meet, but, at the same time, those pantries are struggling to keep the shelves full.

      At St. Lucy's food pantry on Gifford St. In Syracuse, Director Leslie Dubiel says she has seen need increase dramatically since last year. In August of 2010, the pantry helped 450 households. In August of 2011, it helped 550 households.

      Fredrinne Green is one of the people who visits the pantry.

      "This food pantry means a lot to me because at the end of the month, when funds are low, it helps me provide for my family," says Green.

      Dubiel says there are a lot of ways anyone can help food pantries. At St. Lucy's, the demand is always high for toiletries because people cannot buy them with food stamps. She says canned goods are always welcome, and the pantry can also store fresh foods, like fruits and vegetables.

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