MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The 24th Annual Full Service Food Drive was held on Wednesday, Oct. 20, but due to COVID-19, only monetary donations were accepted for the second year in a row.
From 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. that day, the United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties collected money to purchase nonperishable food items, personal care items and cleaning supplies. Servando Arredondo, the United Way’s engagement manager, said while the day may have passed, people can always donate and directly support local food pantries.
“Individuals are still welcome to donate and can continue to donate throughout the year by texting FULL SERVICE to 41444,” Arredondo said.
When people text FULLSERVICE to 41444, they will be prompted with a link to donate. You can also donate online.
The money raised throughout the year greatly helps pantries, which have been so critical during the pandemic, Arredondo said.
“Our pantries do a lot here in the community,” he said. “They’ve especially stepped up in the past year with COVID and everything, so just being able to give back to them and be able to support them a little more as we move forward is always — we’re always grateful for that.”
A pandemic year or not, food pantries in Mon and Preston Counties help everyone from the young to the elderly.
One of the ways pantries help is by reaching people in rural communities. These communities are often overlooked and harder to reach.
This can be especially problematic for the elderly who have special dietary needs.
“A lot of this money goes to goes towards them being able to purchase some of the specialty foods that some of their clients may need,” Arredondo said. “So, if someone is diabetic, they try to cater directly towards that client, and a lot of this money goes towards supporting programs like that.”
If you’re able to give, the United Way would “greatly appreciate it”, Arredondo said.
All of the money is split among pantries in Mon and Preston Counties that are affiliated with the United Way.
If you’d like more information about the United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties, visit www.unitedwaympc.org.