Colorado Economic Recovery and Accountability

Marion Tongish

Marion Tongish

Marion Tongish works at Twin Parish Church, located at 3663 Humboldt Street in Denver. The church distributes food Tuesdays and Thursdays to low-income families and individuals from the nearby community. They give out food provided from several sources: the Food Bank of the Rockies through the Emergency Food Assistance Program, food purchased with church congregation fund donations from the Food Bank of Rockies, donations from stores, restaurants and the church congregation.

Currently, about 850 families and individuals are signed up to get monthly food boxes, consisting of fruit, potatoes, canned goods, rice, beans and frozen proteins, depending on what the church has in its inventory. Most of the clients have an average monthly income of $560 or live off of Social Security or SSI disability. The quality of food the church provides as improved as result of the Recovery Act, as they are now able to afford more protein such as beef and chicken. "It's unusual," Mr. Tongish says, because "that's the one thing that usually costs a lot of money."

The church anticipates that the number of families they serve will increase to 1,000 by the end of the year. The need for food used to go down in the summer, because of seasonal summer jobs, but this year the need did not go down. In fact, the need has increased 35% a year for the last 2 years.


"That's very difficult for us budget-wise," Mr. Tongish explains, "and without the Recovery Act, we really couldn't do it."


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