Circle of Page Food Pantry receives big donation

A front-end loader removes pallets of food from a semi-trailer for storage in the warehouse in the background, while volunteers look on.

A large semi-trailer arrived in Page on Oct. 14, loaded with 36 pallets weighing a total of 36,000 pounds. The delivery was a donation of non-perishable food to the Circle of Page Food Pantry from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Because of the size of the donation and the limited space at the Circle of Page Food Pantry, which is located at St. David’s Episcopal Church, Lock Blocks LLC, a local lightweight building-block manufacturer, volunteered temporary storage space in its warehouse until the food is distributed.  

A front-end loader with a forklift attachment unloaded the semi-trailer and brought each pallet of food into the nearby warehouse. Volunteers, ready to help, watched as the seemingly endless trailer kept producing pallets of food.

Once the food was offloaded, volunteers got to work stripping the plastic covering off of the pallets and loading the cases of food onto pickup trucks and trailers.  

The food was taken to the food bank, where volunteers unloaded the cases and stored them on shelves for distribution to those in need.

Crystal Phillips – who organized the delivery – and her staff had placed signs to guide volunteers to where the different types of food would be stored.

Before long, the pantry building was full, and there was no room for more until it was given away.  

“It takes a village to run the food bank, acquire food, donations and grants, to pull it off,” said Phillips, who has managed the food bank for a year.

In the past year, the food bank has received a full-size van, about $66,000 in donations and grants, and a current total of over 66,000 pounds of food.  

“The community has stepped up well in the past year,” Phillips said, adding that appreciated everyone who has helped as a volunteer, as well as with donations of food and money.  

Phillips thanked Josh Smith, bishop of a local stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for authorizing the donation, and Rosendo Lopez of Lock Blocks for temporarily storing the food. Phillips also thanked Banner Health Hospital’s doctors and nurses and Lake Powell Cruisers for generous monetary donations; Aramark for a substantial grant; and the First Baptist Church for additional food donations.

While the amount of food seems large, the demand from people in need is great in the Page area, and the food delivery will last less than a year. Smith said that these are “donations from good people around the world.”

There is a huge need for food in the Page area, and Phillips said she was glad to lead the honorable effort.

Volunteers are always welcome on Tuesdays from 1-5 p.m. and Thursdays from 8:30 a.m. to noon at St. David’s Episcopal Church at 421 S. Lake Powell Blvd. Phillips said volunteers don’t have to stay the whole time. Even an hour per week is welcome.  

Readers who would like to help can contact the food bank at 928-645-9533.  

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