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EARLY CLOSURE 2/22/24: CCFB will close at 2:00 pm on Feb. 22 for an offsite staff training.

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“Heat or Eat”: Some Neighbors Have to Make This Difficult Choice

The first days of January have been mild, but as Pennsylvanians, we know that the blustery days of winter are still ahead. Unfortunately, as the chill of winter blasts through the hills and towns of Chester County, our communities are still in desperate need. Hunger knows no season.

Those less fortunate still require heat and hot water and other social services, in addition to food. The rising costs of many basic necessities, especially groceries, continue to affect individuals and families who may have never experienced food insecurity.  People in our community may have to decide whether to pay a utility bill or cut drastically into their food supply. Heat or Eat… what would you choose?

Government assistance isn’t always an option. Household income generally must be at or below 200 percent of the poverty line. For a family of four for the federal fiscal year 2023-2024, that’s $5,000 a month or less to qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly known as food stamps). This is where we help. There is no need to choose between paying for heat or choosing to eat. Our neighbors depend on food assistance from CCFB and its network of hunger-relief partners to make ends meet all year long.

You can help by donating in one (or more) ways. Your donations are always welcome and valuable to the Chester County Food Bank, and we appreciate everything you do all year long.


Join other donors and help us continue our mission to mobilize the community to ensure access to real, healthy food.


The Chester County Food Bank is the central hunger relief organization serving more than 160 food cupboards, meal sites, and social service organizations throughout Chester County. We take a steadfast approach to provide food and build support in the neediest communities while raising awareness and engagement among our community.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in February 2017 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.