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Mobile food bank to visit area communities

Generous trucks of perishable foods are coming to Belfield, Taylor and Richardton on May 17. The trucks will be filled with fresh vegetables, bakery items and boxed goods.

"Our Mobile Food Pantry and Pop-up Perishable Food Program brings trucks full of food directly into these communities and gives them a convenient opportunity to get the food that they need," said Rachel Monge, who serves as regional service manager for the Great Plains Food Bank for western North Dakota.

The Great Plains Food Bank Pop-up Perishable Food Program is the organizer of the food and asks anyone in need of food assistance in each town and all communities around the area to attend and receive food at no cost.

"Many of our clients live in rural areas and we understand the importance of making fresh and nutritious food readily available," Monge said.

The food program will be making stops at the following locations and times:

• Belfield in the parking lot of the Belfield / Medora Food Pantry (506 2nd Ave. NE) from noon until 1:30 p.m. (Mountain time)

• Taylor in the parking lot of the Taylor Nursery (202 Main St.t W) from 2 to 3 p.m. (Mountain time)

• Richardton in the east parking lot of City Hall (111 North Ave. W) from 3 to 4 p.m. (Mountain time).

"One in nine in North Dakota struggle with not enough food to eat each day, and these programs provide them a convenient option," Monge said.

Great Plains Food Bank staff members recommend that individuals bring plastic bags or boxes to take food home.

Retailers, growers and farmers donate the food and then they are trucked into the main headquarters in Fargo. A portion of the food also comes in from the USDA. Goods come in bulk and volunteers repackage them to smaller portions ready for people to take.

The Great Plains Food Bank Mobile Food Pantry and Pop-up Perishable Food Program began in 2008 and have pop-up food banks every month. They are two programs that bring fresh food and produce into rural communities that struggle with access to food assistance.

A complete schedule of dates and locations can be found at https://greatplainsfoodbankorg.presencehost.net/get_help/mobile_pantries....

The Great Plains Food Bank serves as North Dakota's only food bank. The network has 213 food pantries, shelters, soup kitchens and other charitable feeding programs operating in 99 communities across North Dakota and Clay County, Minn.

The Great Plains Food Bank has distributed more than 185 million pounds of food to children, seniors and families in need of their assistance. The program is a member of Feeding America, the nation's food bank network.

According to their website, they also encourage volunteering to help sort, label and repack donated and bulk foods, assemble boxes and bags for special programs, provide administrative support and assist during special events.

Their goals is to provide the best possible volunteer experience and prepare volunteers to become outspoken hunger advocated in their community.

For more information regarding the Great Plains Food Bank, visit www.greatplainsfoodbank.org.

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