It might be your grandma or grandpa, your parents, your neighbors or an elderly friend you care about. They could be at risk for going hungry. The reasons might include: forgoing meals to pay for medication, medical care, rent, or utilities.

In fact, Feeding America (parent organization for Feeding South Dakota) indicates 65% of seniors served last year had to choose between buying food and meeting exactly those kinds of obligations or necessities.

Statistics from Feeding South Dakota reveal a sobering portrait of hungry senior citizens in our city and state. Almost 20% of South Dakotans who are 50 and older live below the poverty line and much of the time have very little money to spend on nutritious food.

That is where the rest of us come in. Every month The Salvation Army, in partnership with the State of South Dakota, and Feeding South Dakota, facilitate the Senior Food Commodity Box Program. Eligible seniors (aged 60 & older) can receive a food box for free each month.

Each fall, another of the Salvation Army's wonderful partners, Comfort Keepers (an in-home Senior care service company) collects non-perishable food items to make sure those commodity boxes continue to help hungry seniors in Sioux Falls. Last year the program provided over 5,000 boxes to seniors in Lincoln and Minnehaha counties.

Comfort Keepers will be placing donation boxes in all Sioux Falls Hy-Vee locations, Fareway foods (eastside and westside Sioux Falls locations and in Harrisburg), Franklin Food Market (711 North Cliff Avenue), Andy's Affiliated Foods (1025 S. Cleveland Avenue) and at Active Generations (2300 W. 46th Street).

For more information please call Comfort Keepers at 605-977-5513 and ask for Jason Feiock, or call The Salvation Army at 605-338-6649 ext. 312.

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