I wanted to send this Thank You letter in January. Here it is the middle of February and I’m still trying to play catch up. Myself, as President of this pantry, and our Board members believe that we should never forget to be grateful for what we receive from you. Thank You from the bottom of our hearts and Thank You from the 38,000 people who received food from the pantry in 2022. Enclosed is the pantry’s Profit and Loss statement. We want the public to know we are good stewards of their donations and to know what we can accomplish with the funding we receive. We could never have achieved all we do without you.
We would also like to share the good news that the Jefferson Foundation awarded the pantry $225,000.00 to purchase a new tractor trailer with refrigeration. The new trucks now cost $250,000. The truck has been ordered but will not be received until the 4th quarter of 2023. The grant money is now in our savings along with money received from Jefferson County ARPA funds of $250,000.00. The ARPA funds were a one-time donation to pantries in Jefferson County. The pantry plans to use the ARPA funds to help build safe housing for the elderly; 55 and older.
You might be wondering at this point, am I going to ask for donations. No, I am not. I just want to share with you what great things we have been able to accomplish for our clients in 2022 because of caring people like you.
The pantry’s expenditure for direct client support in 2022 was $57,962.37. The pantry paid utility bills, including electric and propane and dental bills. The pantry purchased hams and turkeys for Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter.
Other services offered at the pantry include:
- Free oil changes, a once-a-year program.
- Free smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors installed for English or Spanish households by the Cedar Hill Fire Department year-round.
- Free playpens supplied by Big River Ambulance year-round.
- Free eye exams and glasses made on site while kids wait, sponsored by Jefferson Foundation and Eye Thrive. The Eye Thrive van was at the pantry twice in 2022, and we are hoping for four visits in 2023.
- Free I-pads and I-phones for one year with no monthly fee from T-Mobile offered year-round.
- Free wellness check by a visiting nurse once per week at the Pantry.
- Free diapers, formula and sanitary supplies made possible by the Pantry partnership with Diaper Bank and funded by the Jefferson Foundation.
- Free clothing and household items to victims of disaster including flooding and fire.
- Free shots and checkups offered by the Health Department at the Pantry six times a year.
- Drug rehab programs offered for free, recipient must agree to stay in the program for one year.
- Farmers Market was offered to vendors free all of 2022. We believe we are getting the younger generation involved entrepreneurship. Vendor spaces are also free for 2023.
- Our lighted walking track is stationed with Read-a Book partnered with the library and Wellness Walk partnered with the Health Department.
- Playground, basketball hoops and hopscotch are on the Pantry grounds along with a nature trail that is not lighted.
- Share-a-Book is under the pavilion by the playground.
- A Blessing Box is in front of our pantry for the homeless to pick up food. If you wish to donate to the Blessing Box, please donate only pull-top cans for easy opening.
- Last, but not least we have given out 1,993,543 pounds of food in 2022. These are donations from Foodbank, Food Search, Hero’s Care, Convoy of Hope, April Showers, Postal drive and Boy Schout Drive. The public, many churches and organizations also held food drives and donated food in 2022.
Schnucks, Dierbergs, Price Chopper, Aldi’s and Dollar General donate by Dollar Fresh time amount. The dollar value donated and given out was $624,692.84. The IRS valued each pound donated at $1.70, making the cash value of food given out in 2022 $4,013,715.94.
We are so proud of our volunteers who continue to work to give the food out to 250 families per week. The pantry continues to have no paid staff.
Again, thank you, to all who made this possible. Please feel free to call or stop by the Peace Pantry with any questions or concerns you may have. We also welcome anyone who can volunteer!
Happy New Year and May God Bless you. We can, together, make a difference in someone’s life. Kindness is priceless.
With Sincere Thanks,
Linda E. Schroeder, President
The Peace Pantry