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Food bank announces needs

Organizers seeking local donations

— The Sunrise Outreach Food Pantry is open Friday mornings in its new 529 S. Ninth St. location.

Now organizers are asking for community support for operating expenses.

“The food bank simply outgrew the basement location and then the church was sold, “Food service director Ken Trainor told Daybreak Rotarians Wednesday.

Trainor explained while the new location is bigger “…and we are able to serve people more efficiently, we also have expenses we didn’t incur at the old First Christian Church location.”

He said since the move the food pantry, which allows participants to “shop” for the foods they need, it costs $1,089 a month to keep the doors open.

Before Sunrise Outreach didn’t pay for anything except the garbage fees, thanks to the church’s generosity, he said.

He said funds from donations and public support has helped to make up the shortfall.

He has had some success in reducing the pantry’s deficit, which was accomplished by partnering with local churches.

Until recently, the food bank operated under the auspices of the local ministerial association for more than 80 years, Trainor said.

The local churches have pledged $50 per month to help offset the food bank expenses. Sunnyside Community Hospital is also a partner, Trainor said, adding another $300 per quarter to the bank’s income.

He said to further eliminate the deficit, another $629 in monthly support is needed ($7,548 annually).

Trainor’s future plans for the food pantry include adding a help center, opening a clothing bank and offering nutrition and finance classes.

But first, he wants to purchase additional storage shelves and commercial walk-in freezers, all large ticket purchases.

“We are currently using donated household refrigerators and freezers. “Almost every month some food is lost due to lack of adequate perishable food storage, he said.

The food bank continues to be manned by community volunteers. Trainor administers it along with four other food banks, including ones in Mabton and Wapato.


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