KINGMAN – Giving to charities isn’t just a once-a-year thing. Especially not when those charities have operating fees they have to pay through the entire year, and their budgets are tiny.
The Kingman Area Food Bank, 2930 E. Butler Ave., needs donations throughout the year, not just during the holidays. The food bank has been feeding the community for over 50 years and will continue to do so. Catherine Walker, executive director, writes grants and works with local companies to keep the warehouse stocked to serve as many people as it can.
In 2017, the Kingman Area Food Bank provided food for over 104,000 people, according to statistics released earlier this year. That’s 46,510 people directly from the food bank, 57,907 people through churches and senior housing, and 483 homeless people.
Walker noted that the 45,610 individuals receive a shopping cart containing almost $300 worth of groceries, which should make two meals a day for every family member for up to two weeks, some people can get up to 21 days. That means the 7,000-square-foot warehouse, staffed by volunteers, provided between 912,200 and 1.3 million meals during the year.
As of now, Walker did not have year-to-date numbers for 2018, but she did say she sees an increase in the number of families that receive food every month.
The food bank receives donations from five local stores such as Walgreens, CVS and Big Lots but doesn’t receive aid from the federal government, state of Arizona, Mohave County or the City of Kingman.
“I always tell people, if you don’t know what to buy, give a cash donation,” Walker said.
Food isn’t the only type of donations the food bank has received. People have donated hula hoops, light bulbs, dog food and toilet paper.
Whatever can’t be given away via the food bank, Walker said she likes to “pay it forward” by giving it to organizations that can give it away.
Anyone who is in need can go into the food bank and fill out an application. Clients are allowed to receive food once every 30 days. They are open 8 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
The food bank is always accepting food and cash donations and looking for reliable volunteers, Walker said. Call the food bank at 928-757-4165 to donate or volunteer.
“People eat all year round,” Walker said. “People need all year round.”