An Ohio woman spent $3,000 to get a prescription for a brand-new, brand-old refrigerator.
The refrigerator she got was in need of a new water pump.
The $1,000 bill was due in less than 48 hours.
But the Ohio Food Bank has a way to help with bills.
The agency helped the woman with the bill by making the bill payable to her, instead of her bank account.
“If you don’t make your bills payable to your bank account, it will cause a lot of unnecessary stress,” Elizabeth Johnson told the Toledo Blade.
Johnson has spent a lot on groceries, but she says she doesn’t think she’s ever paid anything extra before.
She used to be able to afford a refrigerator, but now she’s struggling to pay for everything.
“I don’t want to be a burden to anyone else,” Johnson said.
Johnson says her biggest worry is not paying for gas.
“My husband is struggling to make ends meet.
He’s been working a full-time job, and now he’s getting by on food stamps and a $3 grocery bill,” Johnson explained.
Johnson also has a $2,000 car loan she’s not getting paid on.
She said she didn’t expect to be charged a bill for the refrigerator, and it was only when she went to her bank to get it that she was told she was.
She’s not worried about paying it off because she knows she has a lot left over for groceries.
Johnson is one of more than 3,000 Ohioans who have reported their grocery bills to the Ohio Department of Agriculture, Food Bank, and Ohio State University.
“It’s not just us who is being charged, it’s every Ohioan who has a food bank account,” said Elizabeth Johnson.
The Ohio Food Banks and Food Bank Advocates Network have partnered to help Ohioans pay for groceries through an online tool called the Free Food Bill Calculator.
The calculator helps people determine how much they should pay on their bills to pay their grocery bill.
For example, if you owe $1 in groceries, you could pay $10 using the calculator.
Johnson said she plans to use the calculator to pay her bills for the upcoming month.
“We’ve got a lot more to deal with than the next month,” she said.
“That’s just the reality of what we live with now.”
Johnson has spent more than $1 million on groceries in the last 12 months, but has paid nothing on bills.
“The first thing I’ve learned is that I’m not going to get anything done if I’m struggling,” she told the Blade.
“Even if I get everything I need, I’m still going to be hurting for money.”
The Ohio Food bank also has an app that helps Ohioans make their payments.
The app, called FoodBuddy, allows users to pay bills using their credit or debit card.
The money saved on the app can then be used to pay the bills.
FoodBuddy allows users pay bills on their mobile devices, as well.
“If you’re unable to make payments to your credit or your debit card because of this issue, then we have a tool that allows you to make a payment online, either through our website or by calling the FoodBank Advocates phone line at 1-800-424-4343,” the app’s description says.
According to the Food Bank of Ohio, Ohioans have been impacted by the growing cost of groceries in recent years.
The food bank says that the average Ohioan is paying about $1.2 million in groceries each year.
The Food Bank said that a large portion of that bill is due to the rising cost of food.
It’s difficult for the Food Banks to keep up with rising grocery costs.
The average cost of a grocery item has increased by $2.75 over the last three years, according to the state of Ohio.
FoodBank advocates also noted that grocery bills are the biggest source of strain for low-income families.
The state estimates that in Ohio alone, about one in five low-wage workers are on food assistance.
The Food Bank says that its efforts to help food stamp recipients have paid off.
“Since the start of the SNAP program in October 2013, we have saved more than 5 million SNAP cards and nearly 4 million eligible families,” the FoodBuddys website says.
“In 2017, the Foodbank saved over $3 million for food assistance and SNAP benefit recipients.”