Providence Food Pantry receives WVCF grant
The Providence Food Pantry Director knew that adding heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units would help the inside of the building stay cool for the volunteers and clients during normal business hours. And the pantry needed new units.
So, she began working on applying for a grant with the Wabash Valley Community Foundation (WVCF) for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units. After completing the writing of the grant, she learned the pantry received an urgent needs grant from WVCF tallying $5,000.
Officials with the Providence Food Pantry Board and Sister Maureen used the money to purchase three air conditioning units for the building.
The units are secure on the roof of the building and have been in place for approximately three weeks.
“We have a lot of elderly volunteers and elderly clients, most of whom are immune-compromised,” Sister Maureen said. “Plus, the units allow the senior citizen volunteers and clients to breathe easier in the summer while reducing the amount of fresh produce we need to send to compost.
“This is going to save us a whole lot of work.”
Approximately 65 volunteers help with Providence Food Pantry, a sponsored ministry of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, including 10 Sisters of Providence and two Providence Associates. Sister Maureen said the average age of a volunteer hovers between 75 and 80-years-old.
“Without all of our volunteers, we would be able to do nothing,” Sister Maureen said.
She added the HVAC units have already proven to help with the air quality in the building.
“They have made for a much more comfortable environment,” Sister Maureen said. “We can also use them for food preservation and more fresh vegetables and bread.”
Additional capital improvements during the pantry’s 2022-23 fiscal year including repairing a forklift; repairing the freezer and cooler; replacing the awning and front façade; purchasing a new van and additional five food wagons; repairing the roof and many ceiling tiles; and adding additional light in the back room of the building.
The pantry ministered to 4,191 families and 14,101 individuals in the past year. Sister Maureen said on a weekly basis, the ministry averages 100 families and 400 individuals.
Clients are allowed to come to the pantry one time a month and must live in Vigo County to utilize the ministry.
Sister Maureen said it costs $20 to help feed a family of five. The pantry is financed entirely by donations. Donations to the pantry are happily accepted on Tuesdays from 9:15-10:15 a.m., or Thursdays from 6:30-11 a.m.
Providence Food Pantry is open every Thursday from 8-10:30 a.m. For more information, call 812-535-2544 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.