By Carelyn Sheppard
Children, seniors, veterans, homeless, struggling families, and the disabled in the community are among those being helped by the Chesterfield Food Bank.
Food bank CEO Kim Hill spoke to the Chester Lions Club recently.
Many people are struggling to keep nutritious food on the table and available, Hill said. Since 2010, the food bank’s mission has been to serve and meet that need because the founders, Travis and Karie Whittle, recognized that many people were ineligible for government programs. Some may fall through the cracks because they make too much to qualify for assistance from the government, yet are barely able to make ends meet.
The food bank receives no money or aid from the government, Hill said. It exists to give a “hand up” and to offer the rest of the Chesterfield County residents a way to express their generosity and compassion through donations and volunteering.
Hill, who is also director of operations, was hired by the food bank in 2011.
Over 8,000 registered volunteers donate their time for this mission, she said. Some people serve in the warehouse, pantry, or the office at food bank headquarters at 12211 Iron Bridge Road, while others might be truck drivers or help with distribution at various sites around the county.
Currently, the food bank provides over 2,000 meals each week throughout the year. A single distribution point in Ettrick has been joined by seven other locations around Chesterfield.
The food bank also provides breakfast and lunch to children who are enrolled in a summer program.