CONCORD -- The calendar still says spring, but the summer food drive is already underway at the Cooperative Christian Ministry Crisis Center in Concord.
"We need a lot of donations,” said volunteer Alex Barnhardt.
With shelves already bare, the ministry is starting the drive a month earlier than normal.
"The supplies are low, and the need is getting ready to increase even more due to summertime, and now is the time to respond,” said executive director Ed Hosack.
Summer is always peak season in the food pantry business.
"While kids are out of school and parents are trying to provide both breakfast and lunch in addition to their normal diets,” Hosack said.
But the need is worse now than ever before, mostly due to a government glitch, he said.
Every county in the state is transitioning to a new computer system to process food stamps and many aren't getting their food stamps on time.
"This delay in the delivery of their food stamps is causing them to seek assistance elsewhere,” Hosack said.
That's putting a bigger strain on charities like his.
"When the families come in, they can't get what we usually give them,” Barnhardt said.
The ministry hopes and expects the community will respond and help fill the cupboards.
The 2013 drop-off locations for the CCM Summer Food Drive are:
• On the Run, 1160 Copperfield Blvd., Concord
• On the Run, 540 Lake Concord Road, Concord
• On the Run, 1110 Union St. S., Concord
• On the Run, 1595 Hwy. 73 E., Concord
• ?On the Run, 211 Davidson Hwy., Concord
• On the Run, 1110 Dale Earnhardt Blvd., Kannapolis
• On the Run 3700 Concord Pkwy. S., Harrisburg
• Cannon Pharmacy, Kannapolis Main, 1706 S. Cannon Blvd., Kannapolis
• Cannon Pharmacy, Kannapolis North, 1402 N. Cannon Blvd., Kannapolis
• Cannon Pharmacy, Concord, 760 Cabarrus Ave. W., Concord
• Centerview Hardware, 707 N. Cannon Blvd., Kannapolis
• ?F&M Bank, 2975 Dale Earnhardt Blvd., Kannapolis
• F&M Bank, 635 Church St. N., Concord
• Independent Tribune, 363 Church St. N., Ste. 140, Concord
CCM Food Pantries will also be accepting food donations. Locations and hours are:
• CCM Crisis Center, 246 Country Club Dr., Concord. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday.
• Bethel Baptist Helping Hands Food Pantry at Bethel Baptist Church, 1209 ¼ Opal St., Kannapolis. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday and Thursday.
• Cupboard of Love Food Pantry at Westford UMC, 273 Hwy. 49 S., Concord. 8:30-11:30 a.m. Saturdays.
• Kannapolis Food Pantry at West Point Baptist Church, 1100 Pine St., Kannapolis. 8:30-11:30 a.m. Saturdays.
• Christian Hearts Food Pantry at Oak Ridge Baptist Church, 5340 Flowes Store Road, Concord. 8:30-11:30 a.m. Saturdays.
• North Kannapolis Baptist Church Food Pantry, 312 Locust St., Kannapolis. 9 a.m. to 12 noon Wednesdays.
•New Life Baptist Church, 1281 Biscayne Dr., Concord. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
• TB2G Food Pantry at Pine Bluff UMC, 11000 Reed Mine Road, Midland. Call 704-888-3090 for appointment.
• Charity Baptist Church, 2420 Brantley Road, Kannapolis. Call 704-9358-7668 for appointment.