Food Bank Distribution Thursday in Monte Vista
As winter tightens its icy grip on the San Luis Valley, residents can often find that keeping food in the cupboards can be challenging. For many who are struggling, fresh produce is the most difficult to get. For others, it’s difficult to ask for assistance. Thankfully there’s the Compassion Food Bank (Compa) and their next distribution in the San Luis Valley will be this Thursday, Jan. 21 in Monte Vista at Ski Hi Stampede from 12 noon – 3 p.m.
Compa is a nonprofit organization that operates out of Pueblo to serve people throughout Southern Colorado. It is not affiliated with any group, church, or state organization therefore, there is NO QUALIFYING to receive the benefits from the food bank. They ask for a $20 donation to cover costs such as operating the refrigerated truck, as well as paying for the fuel to pick the food up in Denver and get it distributed throughout Southern Colorado. On average, a food box is comparable to about $120-150 of retail groceries.
According to their website, they provide fresh fruits & veggies – a lot is organic – breads, tortillas, dairy products, as well as a variety of other donated items which most other food banks don’t want to deal with, because of storage issues.
Typically you will receive enough food to share with friends or neighbors and your participation does not take away from someone in need, it ensures that the program continues for everyone. According to organizers, the food is collected directly at distribution plants. It is not leftover or secondhand items from grocers or things close to expiration, but is healthy and fresh products. In full disclosure, they do recommend that you look over the boxes before accepting them.
Now in its second decade of operation, Compassion Food Bank started in 2004 in the San Luis Valley when the founder’s mother and other seniors at her church were concerned about how many people were struggling to buy things. Compassion Food Bank is there to help those in need, particularly families with young children, single parents and elderly who sometimes struggle to buy groceries.
Since anyone can participate, you can pick up a box for someone else to help out. According to a recent post on the group’s Facebook Page: We had a local property owner come through and donate for 6 boxes over Christmas and delivered one to each of her renters. This has a much greater impact than knocking $20 off the rent. She would not have been able to do this with any other program because of restrictions other food pantries have in place.
Compa has distributions twice a week throughout Southern Colorado and encourages everyone to take advantage of the events. So please support the program and share the information and the schedule of events. Also, if you in a position to contribute they do take donations and are available for pick up. Contact Compassion Food Bank Distribution Manager Larry Ocana with any questions: 719-406-4174.