Fayette's Helping Hands Food Pantry update 3.11.09

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

There’s no question about the need for a food pantry in Fayette. The challenge now is to keep the shelves stocked.

So far, that hasn’t been a problem, said Bob Yano, after the first seven weeks of operation for the Fayette Helping Hands Food Pantry. But with current economic conditions, the need to help feed isn’t likely to subside.

Looking through the statistics for February, Yano said about 200 families were helped, with about half of those families having children.

Not only has use of the pantry remained strong, but the core of volunteers needed to keep the store open has also been steady. About 25 people showed up last Thursday to help stock the shelves and clean.

Food and other goods have arrived from a variety of sources. The vast majority is purchased cheaply at the Northwest Ohio Food Bank in Toledo, but school groups and churches have sponsored food drives and individuals often leave items at the door of the pantry, located downtown in the former Gaslight Restaurant building.

Pennington Orchards has donated fruit and Dennis Farms continues to give potatoes.

“We’ve been getting a lot of meat donated lately and we’re trying to get more dairy,” Yano said.

A freezer and cooler are both available at the facility, which is owned by Don and Jane Stiriz.

Kris Keiser obtained a grant for the pantry that will bring in $1,100 in each of the next two months. Money has also come from the Fayette National Honor Society, the Lions Club and the Nazarene youth group.

Yano expects to receive many donations of fresh produce later in the summer when local gardens begin producing, and there’s been talk of planting a garden specifically for the pantry.

Unemployment figures show Fulton County with among the highest number of jobless people in the state, Yano said.

“I would expect to soon have 100 families a week near the end of the month when food stamps run out,” Yano said.

He’s sorry that the need for the pantry exists, but he’s delighted that Helping Hands came along when it did.

“Our opening was perfect,” Yano said. “I’m glad we’re here.”

Spring Drive

A special spring donation drive is now underway in conjunction with the Alan Shawn Feinstein Foundation. Yano expects to receive a portion of the $1 million designated for agencies dedicated to alleviate hunger.

The more money and food donated during this period, the more Fayette will receive from the Feinstein Foundation.

Not only does the local food pantry keep its shelves stocked with donations through April, Bob Yano said, but it also gets credit for each item through the Feinstein project.

Donations can be dropped off at the pantry on Thursdays from 1 to 5 p.m. or in canisters at the post office, school, library, bank and churches.

Donations can also be mailed to Yano at 18118 U.S. 20, Fayette, OH 45321.

 

  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.rover
    CLEARING THE WAY—Road crossings in the area on the construction route of the Rover natural gas pipeline are marked with poles and flags as preliminary work nears. Ditches and field entry points are covered with thick planks in many areas to support equipment for tree clearing operations. Actual pipeline construction is progressing across Ohio toward a collecting station near Defiance. That segment of the project is expected to wrap up in July. The 42-inch line through Michigan and into Ontario is scheduled for completion in November. The line is projected to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas every day.
  • Front.geese
    ON THE MOVE—Six goslings head out on manuevers with their parents in an area lake. Baby waterfowl are showing up in lakes and ponds throughout the area.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Face Paint
    FUN NIGHT FUN—Savanna Miles sits patiently while Abbie White works on a face paint design Friday during the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Gracie Snead watches the progress after having spent time in the chair. Abbie was one of several volunteer painters, each creating their own unique look. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2017