Myrtle Beach-area food banks, shelters discuss unusual needs

This holiday season, area food banks and shelters are bulking up on volunteers and donations of canned goods and boxed pastas.

But some items in high demand aren’t usually donated, partly because staff doesn’t publicize the need and partly because people don’t think of these items as essential.

Helping Hand of Myrtle Beach – a short term crisis agency that provides rental assistance, food and gas cards to those in need – never turns down donations or volunteers, said Executive Director Tina Shuppy.

The center has about 60 year-round trained volunteers, Shuppy said, and sees an increase of short-term volunteers around the holidays. The center also loads up on food and nonperishable donations during the winter, but some items are always in need. Spaghetti sauce, canned fruit, oatmeal and macaroni and cheese always are in high demand, Shuppy said.