“People just keep coming in asking for help,” said Diana Logan, a volunteer at the service center office, in Bedford Plaza, 7200 Lewis Ave.
“When the Spirit of Christmas Program started, people were waiting to sign up.”
Mary Glover-Booher, the south county case worker, said the office, which is open from 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, averages about 60 visitors a week and seeks donations of products in high demand.
“We are really in need of nonfood items such as soap and laundry and grooming items,” she said. “We get a lot of requests for gas cards too. The need is great.”
She said she makes every effort to make the donated goods go a long way.
“A big jug of laundry soap will help two or three families. We break it down into smaller containers that we then give out,” she said.
She said the service center always can use donations of canned and packaged foods such as soups, pasta, rice, baking mixes, cereals, crackers, meats, jelly, spaghetti sauces, and broth.
It also accepts donations of outerwear for children and adults for distribution in September through March.
Recipients are limited to one of these a year.
In addition to Temperance, the center serves Dundee, Ida, Lambertville, LaSalle Township, Luna Pier, Ottawa Lake, Petersburg, and Samaria.
It can help with rent and utility bills and make referrals to public and private agencies.
Capt. Robert Whitney, the Salvation Army’s corps officer in Monroe, said 1,300 Monroe County families registered for the Christmas program, which will distribute food boxes and gifts today, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
“Registration is now closed, but quite a few people signed up,” he said.