Thanks in large part to the still-struggling economy, need in the York area has been great this year. New users fueled part of that increase. Many more children have been eating at Our Daily Bread as more middle-class families have been relying on the kitchen.

More people have lost their jobs, they have to keep a roof over their heads, and they need a car. If they can find food, that's a huge expense off their back.

At Our Daily Bread, they've served about 67,000 meals in 2010. That's the most in more than a decade.

While the recent cold snap has driven additional people indoors to the warmth of the soup kitchen and other charities, the good news is there's a lot of help available during the holiday season because more people take the time to volunteer or donate this time of the year.

Our Daily Bread accepts food donations, but money is most needed to help pay for utilities. Call Paula Koch at 848-1674.

York Rescue Mission is collecting nonperishable food items, including pastas, spaghetti sauce, canned vegetables, soups and meats, oatmeal and grits. Call Ada Hite at 812-1692.

The United Way of York County is collecting money to be used for service programs at 73 partner agencies. Call executive director Robert Woods at 843-0957 or go to unitedway-york.org.