CHULA VISTA, Calif. (KGTV) — It’s another night of schoolwork for Diego and Denise Lugo’s children, and another day of dealing with the impacts of inflation.
“The gas prices going up and they’re not going to stop going up. And the salaries are still in the same place. I know that we get the stimulus and other things but, we’re still having debts,” said Diego Lugo. “We used to buy the oil; use a simple canola oil to do the bread or something like that. It was maybe a dollar something and right now it’s five dollars.”
It’s not just this family of five under their roof. The Lugos are taking care of Lugo’s mother-in-law and his niece and nephew.
“Their parents also suffered the struggles of the pandemic. They didn’t find jobs for a couple of years. About seven months ago - more than that - I offered help,” said Diego Lugo. “That means more food, more expenses.”
While dealing with a packed household and inflation, Lugo - a volunteer in the community himself - looked for help when it comes to needing more food than before.
His family’s call was answered by Feeding San Diego and their Together Tour food distribution site in Chula Vista at Southwestern College.
“And I hear about that. So, I get the bulletin, I send an email and I get the invitation to go. It was amazing,” Lugo said.
Clearly, the Lugo family isn’t alone.
Feeding San Diego distributes 40 pounds of food to nearly 2,000 households each month at this site in Chula Vista.
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“We never thought that the Together Tours, our large-scale distributions, would continue when we started them in the start of the pandemic in 2020. But here we are still going. The need is greater than ever with, as you mentioned, inflation, gas prices, education, childcare on top of the food prices rising,” said Sam Duke, Senior Manager of Volunteer Engagements for Feeding San Diego.
The fruits, veggies and other items have helped Lugo and his family a lot as they deal with inflation.
“I don’t need to spend as much. I maybe get for a couple of things every time we go to the market,” said Lugo. “I always on the side of volunteering and helping. And now getting the chance of getting something back - I don’t waiting for - but it’s amazing and it’s a blessing.”
The Lugo family said they also picked up food for another family they know in need and shared some of the extra food with others.