The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

West End Food Pantry now serving 400

 

August 23, 2018

Darrell Alexander

Shonda Ware stands among the bins and shelves of the West End Food Pantry.

Wahkiakum County has a little gem of a place in Rosburg at Johnson Park called West End Food Pantry (WEFP). The pantry is a 501 C-3 non-profit organization that is open to the public every Thursday 1-5 p.m., or by appointment.

There are no restrictions as to who can get food. Some people come only one time because they are new to the area and needed to get a start. Many are bi-monthly partakers. The pantry is now feeding approximately 400 people from 90 families. The WEFP has a variety of canned goods, eggs, bread, fruit, and vegetables along with many other staples.

This breakthrough idea was the result of many people's efforts. After six to eight months of planning, their doors officially opened on Dec. 1, 2014. Suzie Whalen (director) along with Shonda Ware (president) are directly responsible for getting the ball rolling with advice from Wahkiakum County Commissioner Mike Backman.

Other WEFP members of the board include Sonja Kruse as vice-president; Lori Hamp as treasurer; Delores (Dee) Nikkila as secretary, with Joanne Bay and Noreen Fitts as members at large. The pantry's board holds their meetings on the first Thursday of every month. These meetings are open to the public.

The food for WEFP comes from a variety of sources. Our Father's Table in Long Beach donates items. Every first and third Wednesday, the St. Catherine Catholic Church in Cathlamet gives the food pantry the food items they could not give away during their distribution the previous day. Helping Hand located at the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Cathlamet also shares deliveries from a Tacoma based federally funded food distribution center called Northwest Harvest. In the future Northwest Harvest will deliver food directly to the pantry, so volunteers will no longer need to travel to bring in the foodstuffs.

Any money that is donated to the West End Food Pantry goes into their general fund. Once a month $400 is taken out to buy sale items that are needed but not available at the pantry. They buy things like peanut butter, cereal, toiletries, etc. Any beef, elk, or deer that are donated are processed, packaged, and paid for by the WEFP. All the meat is processed into hamburger, and all pork is ground into sausage. This is done in fairness to all who receive food.

The West End Food Pantry is located in Rosburg at 30 Rosburg School Road. Their mailing address is Post Office Box 55, Rosburg; phone 360-465-2344.

 

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