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Brown County officials raising awareness for growing hunger, homeless problem


GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Local officials are trying to shine a light on the growing hunger and homeless problems.

"The need is so great right now, all the food pantries are low on food and fighting for donations," says Dean Ahrens, President of the Brown County Food & Hunger Network. "The housing is the same way, the waiting lists are long, there are people sleeping cars with children."

So Brown County this week will join a nationwide effort these needs. On Tuesday, Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt and Brown County Executive Troy Streckenbach will issue a proclamation declaring the week of November 11-17, 2012, as National Hunger and Homeless Awareness Week in Brown County.

"It shows a lot, I mean, they've been involved in years past so they know the problems we're having," says Ahrens.

The event will be at Manna for Life, 1599 University Avenue, in Green Bay at 4:30 p.m. A short walk will follow.

Ahrens says often times people worry about how much they can afford to give.

"There's a company called Feeding America that sells the food rescued from different grocery stores, these are non-expired, good products. That can be purchased for very little, so a couple bucks can feed a person for a couple of days," says Ahrens.

Other Hunger and Homeless Awareness Week events include:

  • Monday Nov. 12 through Thursday Nov. 15: Seeds of Hope photo display at the Neville Public Museum. Admission is free with a canned food donation. This exhibit features photos taken by youth on what it means to be homeless or live in poverty.
  • Tuesday Nov. 13: Manna for Life Hunger Walk at 1599 University Avenue. Register at 5 p.m. for the walk which will be followed by a chili dinner. 
  • Wednesday Nov. 14: Feeding America Food Drop at the East Town Mall parking lot. Food distribution from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. (while supplies last). Feeding America will provide bags of groceries to individuals and families in need. No prequalification required.
  • Thursday Nov. 15: Building Community Bridges Resource Fair at the Salvation Army, 626 Union Court from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. This event features representatives from community social services agencies sharing information on resources available for people living in poverty.