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Montgomery Area Food Bank seeking donations

Updated: Jun. 3, 2021 at 10:23 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Montgomery Area Food Bank is the largest food bank in Alabama, feeding 300,000 people across 35 counties.

“You’re talking about multiple thousands of people that this is going to go to,” Montgomery Area Food Bank CEO Richard Deem said looking at shelves nearly stacked to the ceiling with food.

When the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown the state, Deem said the food bank stepped up. With mass unemployment, the facility ramped up food distribution from 29 million pounds to over 32 million pounds.

“Our staff was phenomenal,” Deem said. “It was kind of all boots on the ground, and we were doing what we needed to do.”

Alongside pallets on pallets of nonperishable goods, fruits and vegetables, a walk-in freezer allows for cold storage of products like meat, milk and eggs.

While the food bank assists in the fight against food insecurity, it also has the potential to completely change lives. At a Fund and Food Drive a few years back, a woman came up to Deem and gave him a hug.

“She said ‘Rich, I’ve made it,’” Deem said. “It dawned on me, she was someone that we had helped when I was the director of the Elmore County Food Pantry, and she was letting me know she has a job and she made it.”

In addition to venders, the food bank relies on donations to continue stocking pantries and filling bellies. It says that with every dollar donated, five people can be fed.

The community will have the chance to donate on Friday at the WSFA 12 News Summer Fund and Food Drive. A booth will be set up from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Renfroe’s Market at Eastchase for anyone to bring cash or non-perishable food items.

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