PRESTONSBURG — God’s Pantry Food Bank officially unveiled some cool new enhancements to the agency’s Prestonsburg warehouse Thursday.
During a ribbon-cutting and reception, God’s Pantry officially took the wraps off new frozen and refrigerated storage units that greatly expand the Prestonsburg warehouse’s storage ability. The warehouse can now hold 40 pallets of frozen food, up from 10 before, as well as 18 pallets of refrigerated foods, up from five.
The upgrades are expected to have an impact. In 2011 and 2012, God’s Pantry distributed 981,108 lbs. of food valued at $1.63 million through the Prestonsburg warehouse.
Part of the money for the new units came from God’s Pantry’s “Come to the Table” fundraising campaign, which has meant upgrades and construction across the 50-county region the agency serves. In addition to the cold-storage upgrades in Prestonsburg, God’s Pantry has seen upgrades at the main warehouse in Lexington, a new distribution center in Morehead, a soon-to-be announced distribution center in the London-Corbin area, and a new warehouse in Winchester.
“The 27 years of history we have experienced with the Center in Prestonsburg is valuable as a model for our new Distribution Centers in London and Morehead,” notes God’s Pantry Food Bank Chief Operating Officer John Lancaster. “We have successfully increased the amount of food and people we serve in the remotest portion of our service area. Our partner agencies are better equipped to serve their clients when transportation and inventory storage is available within a reasonable distance from their location.”
Additional funding for the new units was made possible in part through a grant from the Floyd County Fiscal Court, through the Single County Coal Severance Fund to God’s Pantry Food Bank. The Prestonsburg Center has been a source of free or drastically reduced food since God’s Pantry Food Bank established it in 1986. More than 120 programs, such as soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters, senior centers, day treatment facilities and childcare centers, rely on the Prestonsburg Regional Distribution Center as their hub for receiving food, that they distribute free of charge, to families and individuals in need.