Local food pantry will have a new look by the end of 2012 with a grant they received from the Port Authority Community Reinvestment Fund.
“We are very excited about the grant,” said Gail Davis, the nonprofit’s development coordinator. “We seldom spend money on our facilities and then only when funds are designated for capital projects. The vast majority of our funds are funneled to client programs.”
The Port Authority’s $180,000 grant will improve the appearance of the building and thrift store.
Feed My People, started in 1982 by John and Carol DeGuire, donated more than $3 million in food to the hungry last year.
The pantry tries to provide balanced meals to clients, but their donor base is all volunteer, and it’s waning just as the need is growing. Their roster has gone from 269 families served, up to approximately 330 in the past year and a family can mean up to eight or nine people.
Feed My People has several other services aside from emergency food aid. The organization offers legal advice, budget counseling, computer literacy programs, housing assistance and participates in Adopt-A-Family and the Giving Tree.
This year's grants are the fourth round , an affiliate of the St. Louis County Economic Council. The funds stem from the Port Authority Community Reinvestment Fund, created by revenue from the land lease of Pinnacle Entertainment’s River City Casino.
For the first five years of its lease, the Port Authority pledges to reinvest 75 percent of River City's monthly $333,333 lease payments to the Lemay community. Twice a year, the Port Authority gives out the grants to organizations in need of funds for specific projects.
More than $20 million will be generated over the next five years and given to organizations that need a last push of funding for their projects.