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Commodities benefit many

Thursday, August 7, 2008

OREGON COUNTY -- Area churches and volunteers are distributing The Emergency Food Assistance (TEFAP) Commodities every second Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon at the Oregon County Food Pantry located at Sixth and Chestnut Streets (behind the old Thayer Elementary School) in Thayer.

TEFAP commodities is a food distribution program for the elderly and disabled and low income families that are in need of supplemental food.

Oregon County Health Department Administrator Shiela Russell said there are some documents needed in order for first time food pantry participants to pick up food.

They are:

* A utility bill for proof of residence. (If a person does not have a utility bill, they must bring a letter from the homeowner stating that they live there, with their name and phone number for verification).

* Proof of income (pay stub or bank statement).

* Original Social Security cards for each member of the family living in the home.

* Two proxy names. A person may add two people that are allowed to pick up their commodities if they are unable to do so. A person cannot have a proxy pick up the commodities until they come to the pantry and sign a form.

"We highly encourage each family member to pick up their own commodities. We do realize there will be certain circumstances that will prevent a person from coming themselves, so, we will allow a proxy to pick up a person's food only four times a year," Russell said.

If a person is homebound they must have their caregiver bring a note from the doctor, all of the documents stated before and a note saying who can pick up their commodities for them.

Income guidelines for commodity distribution are:

Family size

* one, monthly gross income $1,084

* two, $1,459

* three, $1,834

* four, $2,209

Family size and gross monthly income for those 65 and older.

* one, $1,300

* two, $1,750

* three, $2,200

* four, $2,650

For more information about the Oregon County Food Pantry call Glenda Orahood at 417-264-2283, the Thayer First Baptist Church at 417-264-3403 or the Oregon County Health Department at 417-264-3114 or 417-778-7450.

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