Food Bank Doesn't Skip A Beat After Fire - abc27 WHTM

Food Bank Doesn't Skip A Beat After Fire


Clifton Forge, VA - The Clifton Forge Area Food Pantry continues to pick up the pieces following a weekend fire that destroyed tons of the group's non-perishable items.

Even with the loss, though, the organization says they are still going to make their commitments because of the generosity of the community.

For the past nine years, Deborah West has lived and breathed the food pantry, so it isn't difficult to imagine how hard it was for her to show up Saturday morning to find much of her work burned to a crisp.

Four days later and volunteers have gotten things all cleaned and moved into a different building provided by the town.

"It was devastating. I was heart broken. I couldn't stop crying. I felt like I lost my own home," said West.

Now volunteers are once again feverishly making their way through donations that benefit more than 1,500 people in the area.

Donations that have really begun pouring in since news of their plight first broke.

"My stress level, right now, it's going away. I feel comfortable now. I know we can continue on," said West.

While they get ready for a shipment from Feeding America Southwest Virginia, the biggest concern now is a leaky roof in the building they just moved into.

But even that won't end up being a problem.

"Thank God we have someone that is going to donate the material for a new roof for this building and we have the volunteers who are going to put it on," said West.

An outpouring of goodness, for those who do good works.

Now West just needs help shedding her guilt.

"Everybody that donates to us on a regular basis are struggling... all the churches, organizations. So I feel bad that have to help us even more now that this has happened," said West.

West says faulty electrical feeding in a baseboard heater is to blame for the fire that, while certainly a setback, was unable to keep the Clifton Forge Area Food Pantry from helping others where help is needed most.

They didn't miss a single distribution day.

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