GATE CITY — A local food pantry recently received one of its largest donations of the year.
The Scott County Ministerial Association was awarded a $3,000 grant from Food Lion for its food pantry, located in Gate City. Kevin Barnett, vice chairman of the association, said the grant will make a big impact on the organization and the people it serves.
“That’s a lot of money to help purchase food for the community,” Barnett said. “People of every walk of life come in the door. … In the same week, I saw an elderly woman whose husband had just passed away come in for assistance and a young teenage girl came in who was pregnant. So we see everything.”
What is the Scott County Ministerial Association?
Barnett said the nonprofit organization is comprised of 15 or 16 churches in Scott County. It has run a food pantry for 13 years, providing items like canned goods, frozen meats, fresh produce and bread to around 500 families each month.
“We work with Feeding America Southwest Virginia; we’re part of their pickup program, and we work with a couple of the local grocery stores,” Barnett said. “Price Less and Food Lion are two of them.”
How did the donation happen?
Barnett said Food Lion operates a grant program to support various hunger-related initiatives. Though the association had applied for the grant before, Barnett said this year’s contribution was the largest it had ever received from Food Lion.
“That’s going to help us purchase more food to provide for the clients, and it’s just a huge blessing all the way around for everybody,” Barnett said.
How can you receive assistance?
The food pantry is open every Tuesday and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., though it closes for lunch from noon to 1 p.m. People can typically pick up food from the pantry once a month, or sooner if the need arises.
“We don’t discriminate on anyone; we don’t even have to see your ID, your paycheck or anything,” Barnett said. “You tell us what you’ve got going on, and we’ll try to meet the need for you if we can.”
Donations can be brought to the food pantry, located at 112 Library Ave. in Gate City, or mailed to P.O. Box 1346, Gate City, VA 24251. For more information, call (276) 386-9400.