The winter weather in 2016-2017 left St. Andrew’s Hereford House Food Pantry with flood damage to the walls, floors, and shelves. After closing our doors for four months to conduct some major work on the floors and walls, including carpet removal, drain and gutter cleaning and installation of a sump pump, we were left with a number of related or second tier problems which required funds beyond parish donations, grants from the Oregon Food Bank, and prior help from the Commission on Poverty and Homelessness.
Then we learned about the opportunity to apply for the Pentecost Offering Grant. We received the grant and bought three large restaurant style mats for the doorways and bagging area, and a window air conditioner which kept summer temperatures at levels acceptable to the Oregon Food Bank. We also repaired the hand-washing sink, another requirement of the Oregon Food Bank and Multnomah County health laws. We were able to buy some wood, which a volunteer used to repair shelves and build a few new ones for a clothing outreach area we started this year. We also were able to get our pantry computer set up to access the church Wi-Fi and hook up to a donated printer. All in all – much needed improvements!
All this work after the flooding resulted in a new contract with the Oregon Food Bank and a grand re-opening in May 2017. Since then, we have passed a surprise inspection. Between the reopening in May 2017 and December 2017 we fed 5,500 clients! A significant number! God is good and Hereford House shares God‘s abundance with our North Portland community.
The 2018 Pentecost Offering Grant cycle is now open for applications. Funds to support the grant will be collected by churches on the day of Pentecost, May 20, 2018 as one of the diocese’s canonical offerings.