ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Food insecurity is a problem in the Capital Region every single day and with the holidays right around the corner, it becomes even more challenging to keep the shelves of local food pantries stocked.

“We have a serious food insecurity problem right here at home,” said Michael Castellana, SEFCU CEO and President. “I think, again: trying to raise the awareness of that, bring people together to finally once and for all try to minimize and hopefully one day eliminate. That is really the ultimate goal of this program.”

The Sister Maureen Joyce Food Pantry, operated by Catholic Charities, takes in over 50 new families per month, and as the need in the Capital Region grows, program coordinator Renee Wendover says it’s important to help out now more than ever.

“It could be you at any time, there is such a need to help people,” Wendover said. “We get new faces that come in that are lost. They don’t know where to start. They’ve never been to a food pantry before. There’s a lot of need and a lot of new faces.”

They order 7.5 tons of food per month, and almost 2.5 tons of fresh produce. With the help of No Neighbor Hungry, Wendover says $1 can go a long way.

“For every dollar that’s donated, we can purchase $6 worth of product from the Regional Food Bank, so that helps a tremendous amount,” Wendover said. “Our needs are going up and changes by the week, so a lot of our clients that used to come in are now getting home deliveries. We have a lot of quarantine people that we deliver to.”