400 local families receive food and essentials

International charity group Feed The Children partnered with local First Apostolic Church to help provide food and living essentials to 400 impoverished families. / Doug Reardon

It's a staggering statistic, but one that is true nonetheless.

Just about 1-in-2 families in Albany â" nearly 48% - are classified as impoverished. This data comes from Feed the Children, one of the largest international charitable organizations that is based here in the U.S.

But Feed the Children did more than just provide data showing how bad the problem is â" they took steps to fix it. Partnering with First Apostolic Church on Lumpkin Street in Albany on Thursday, Feed the Children provided a literal truckload of aid to 400 local families in need. The charity sent its own tractor-trailer full of the food and essentials to First Apostolic, where it was unloaded for waiting residents.

"We are so thankful to First Apostolic Church for helping to provide food and essentials to children and their families," said Erin Engelke, spokesperson for Feed the Children. "We hope people will help us put more trucks on the road and provide assistance for fellow Americans who are suffering through the current economic downturn."

Each pre-selected family received a 25-pound box of food, along with a 10-pound box of living essentials. Each box had items ranging from pasta and peanut butter, to paper towels and lip balm. Bishop Betty Jackson of First Apostolic said the church was simply doing its part to help turn around an issue that has become so prevalent in the community.

"The need is so great," said Jackson. "And while we can we'll just do what we can to help each one, reach one. That's the motto in our church."

Each box is meant to help a family of four get by for an entire week - something that could very well mean the world to any one of the 1-in-2 families here in Albany who are very much in need of it.