KENNETT SQUARE—An electrical fire over the weekend destroyed much of the food at the Kennett Area Food Cupboard, and now an urgent drive is underway to restock the shelves so those who rely on the service don’t go hungry.
“We’re going to set up a pop-up, and the pod will be delivered Wednesday,” said Beth Erisman, a spokesperson for Kennett Area Community Service. “We lost about 50 percent of our food.”
The fire was electrical in nature and began about 4 a.m. Sunday. Crews from Kennett Fire Company No. 1 and Avondale Fire Company were on the scene quickly and contained the fire. The building has been shut down and won’t reopen until damages are repaired and the building is cleaned. There was no structural damage to the building, and a free-standing freezer was removed.
“Last month, we served 1,124 people, and those people are counting on us,” Erisman said.
Donations will be distributed at the pod beginning Friday from noon to 3 p.m., but those who urgently need food can arrive Thursday.
Erisman said $25 Giant gift cards are desperately needed, so families can get the basics like break, milk and eggs. Also needed are rice, beans, cereal, sugar, flour, pasta, peanut butter, strawberry and grape jelly and canned goods of any kind.
“We have some canned items here, that’s all,” Erisman said. “We need donations.”
KACS, home of the Kennett Food Cupboard, provides food to over 800 households throughout the year. Families receive a one-week supply each month. In addition to hunger relief, KACS runs a homeless prevention program to over 300 families and provides permanent housing solutions for 60-80 homeless households each year. For more information, contact 610-925-3556 or visit www.kacsonline.net.
Last year, nearly $22,000 of fresh meats, dairy and produce were purchased by KACS for quality nutrition. More than 500,00 pounds of food moved through the Food Cupboard, and $915,000 in food donations were received.
Average income of a family utilizing the Food Cupboard is $1,855 per month. And 64 households reported no income last year and 174 households rely on just Social Security. Of recipients, 61 percent are Hispanic, 32 percent Caucasian
The majority of participants are working poor - 23 percent are single adults and 20 percent are single parent households; 42 percent are two wage earner households.
Food can be dropped off at the Food Cupboard Friday. it is located at 36 West Cedar St, Kennett Square.