Readers will find inserted in today's editions of The Evening Sun a specially marked grocery bag and coupon for contributions to the Maryland Food Bank's annual Bags of Plenty drive. Food and money raised from this year's campaign will provide Thanksgiving meals for people who otherwise would go without. The funds will also be used to meet people's emergency food needs throughout the winter.
This year's recession has made the need greater than ever. Yesterday The Evening Sun's Laura Lippman reported suburban social service agencies are under siege by record numbers of middle- and lower-middle-income people who have lost their jobs; many also have exhausted their unemployment benefits and savings and are still without work.
Among the crueler ironies of these hard times is that thagencies, both public and private, which normally play a crucial role in providing a social safety net are themselves being stretched to the limit. Contributions to the United Way of Central Maryland, for example, are running several hundred thousand dollars behind last year, even though the needs are much greater due to the continuing impact of the recession.