Demand grows for mobile food bank

North County operation applies ingenuity to serve more hungry households

By Tom Vogt, Columbian science, military & history reporter



How to help

to help

• The food bank needs a volunteer with a pickup or large SUV for weekly deliveries of frozen and refrigerated food from the Clark County Food Bank to the Lewis River warehouse on Thursday or Friday mornings. * 360-225-9662 or

• To donate, visit

Hunger continues to be a growing problem in rural areas of Clark County, said Candice Howell, one of the Lewis River Mobile Food Bank's organizers.

The amount of food given away as well as the number of households served each month continues to climb. "There are still people in need out there," Howell said.

The food bank schedules four Sunday food distributions monthly, rotating among four North County communities.

Its records illustrate how more and more people worry about feeding their families, she said.

In the last six-month average, the Lewis River Mobile Food Bank served 100 to 110 households each month, distributing about 6,000 pounds of food a month.

"In March, that was up to 133 households and 7,500 pounds of food," Howell said.

The normal monthly food distribution schedule, from 2 to 4 p.m. at all sites:

• First Sundays: View Fire Station, 37604 N.E. 119th Ave., La Center;

• Second Sundays: Fire District 2 station, 314 N.W. 389th St., La Center;

• Third Sundays: Yacolt Evangelical Free Church, 509 W. Cushman, Yacolt;

• Fourth Sundays: La Center Evangelical Free Church, 111 E. Fifth St., La Center.

Organizers continue to explore possibilities for expanding their coverage. They would like to establish a distribution site in the Green Mountain area, if they can find a suitable location.

They recently tried a pilot program of once-a-month Wednesday evening distributions to help people who might not be able to get to the Sunday sessions. They ended it after six months because the people who showed up also were their Sunday clients, Howell said.

All delivery sites can accept donations of food and money; receipts can be given for tax deductions.

Tom Vogt: 360-735-4558;