Economic climate leads to overwhelming requests at Metro Ministries

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A local organization that’s helped people in need for more than 50 years is asking for the communities help.

Metro Ministries provides food, shelter, financial assistance and more to families and individuals everyday. Not just on the holidays.

They say the current economic climate has led to overwhelming requests and causing a drop in donations.

Around noon Wednesday at the Family Support Center location in Tampa, there was a short waiting list.

Christina Archer sat until her name was called to get rental assistance.

“I was on a leave of absence due to pregnancy. But I had a miscarriage and I’ve been depressed a lot. That’s my tenth pregnancy, and I got behind on my bills. My husband was trying to carry us, and it’s just been really hard,” Archer said.

She said while battling depression, she felt she was stuck in her house.

That is until she learned about Metro Ministries, and their finance program.

“I loved it because it actually helped me with all my goals and how to save money,” she said. “A lot of the people who were there were giving me ideas and answering questions and I felt so comfortable.”

This isn’t an easy resource to give.

Metro Ministries needs more donations and volunteers to continue helping people like Archer.

The Vice President of Outreach James Dunbar says their goal is to provide services to offset existing costs.

“If we can help provide food for The next couple days until their next round of food stamps comes in or your next paycheck comes in we try to do a win-win wraparound approach,” Dunbar said. “We are seeing more people basically than we’ve ever seen before. It’s really around the cost of living in the Tampa Bay Area from housing rent utilities and also food costs that have skyrocketed. Stuff has really plateaued, but stuff hasn’t come down.”

Because of expensive food and other things, Archer says she doesn’t know if she and her husband will keep trying to have kids.

For now, she says she is grateful for the support from this program.

“Thank God we have a place that you can come and get assistance with food and your light bill, your rent, because if it wasn’t here, I would’ve been out. And I don’t know where I would’ve been at,” Archer said.

Learn more about donating or volunteering with Metro Ministries here.

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