RENOVO - The Renovo Area Food Bank, operating from Trinity Episcopal Church at Third Street and St. Clair Avenue, distributes food boxes on the third Thursday of every month to those who need a little assistance in stretching food dollars.
The food bank is an outreach ministry of the Renovo Area Council of Churches which works cooperatively to support it with volunteer workers, dollars, food drives, Souper Bowl Sunday soup drives, and plate offerings from community services during Advent and Lent.
Food bank volunteers do a yeoman's job of facilitating the monthly distribution of food boxes to neighbors in Renovo and nearby communities.
“Charlie Angels” at the Renovo Area Food Bank are Charles Allen, seated, and standing from left, Fr. Charles Ugo, Pastor Charles LeFort, Charles Morton and Charles Barnum.
Volunteers come from all walks of life. Many represent their churches denominations, but many more are just good folk who want to do what they can to make life a little better for others.
They order food, plan menus, unload food truck deliveries, pack boxes for more than 100 families. They assist at the distribution by carrying food to parked vehicles, deliver food to shut-ins, and are on hand each month to greet and to welcome people new to the process.
The work they do is essential to the Council of Churches' ability to provide this much-needed community service.
"To every volunteer who helps in any way, the council wishes to express sincere gratitude," a spokesman said. "The credit for all of our success belongs to the many volunteers who come out each month and serve God by serving their community."
There are many others in the community who quietly and without notice, give critical support and help to the food bank. A local merchant donates seasonal merchandise - clothes, shoes, household products and the like - that is not sold by the desired date. Both individuals and businesses have donated sizable sums of money to be used in making food purchases from the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank and from local grocery stores. A friend of one of the local churches buys loaves of bread to give as a special distribution gift.
Students from Renovo Elementary and Bucktail Area High School conduct food drives, build shelving for food storage, help move food from the storage area to the distribution area. Several students have selected the food bank as their senior project, and these students have assisted with fundraisers, building projects and lots of hard work.
State and federal officials who visit from time to time have called it one of the very best food bank operations they have seen.
Through its volunteers, it has earned its reputation as a first-rate facility.