Ahead of the Holidays, Christian Charities Plan Around Supply Chain Holdups

Homeless ministries are preparing for higher costs and greater demand, while publishers and distributors relying on overseas shipping are also affected.

Wheeler Mission in Indianapolis usually produces tens of thousands of Thanksgiving meals for the hungry. Their motto: “Fill plates with food and lives with the hope of Christ.” This year, they may run out of the former before everyone is served.

Sam Brown, head chef at the Christian social services and homeless ministry, said he’s worried about having enough turkeys. From California to Chicago, there are nationwide reports of turkey shortages and massive price increases, both of which will affect nonprofit organizations feeding folks this season.

Shipping orders are blowing past delivery deadlines due to difficulty finding truck drivers. The ministry is short-staffed and is still trying to hire a dishwasher.

Hundreds of charities across the country are feeling the crunch of the global supply chain crisis, which is coming to national attention ahead of the holiday season. New research shows that nearly half of churches and faith organizations are involved in feeding the hungry, and this year they’re forced to shift processes based on longer wait times, product shortages, and unstable market expectations.

In some cases, ministries have been able to move forward with plans as normal. In other cases, depending on demand and access to resources, they’ve seen how the supply chain issues have gone on to impact those they’re trying to serve—from feeding the hungry in their own neighborhoods to sending Christian resources around the world.

The current struggles aren’t due to a lack of community generosity. Despite last year’s economic downturn, Americans actually donated more money in 2020 than they did in 2019. Though numbers for 2021 are not yet released, the Chronicle of Philanthropy …

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