In the 15 minutes before the West Linn Food Pantry opened at 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, several people waited outside the doors. They were the first of 43 families to visit the pantry that day. In the queue, one woman reminded everyone else to apply for utility assistance with Portland General Electric. The woman, Sally, said she's come to the food pantry nearly every week since it opened in 2007. One difference between the pantry today from when it started 15 years ago, Sally noted, is how many people rely on it.

Likely due to inflation and other economic challenges, food pantries in West Linn, Lake Oswego and Wilsonville are seeing increased demand for food and other services — thus putting a strain on their supplies and leaving them in need of donations.