Each week the Surface Creek Community Services Food Bank serves anywhere from 20 to 40 qualified families and individuals in need who reside in Cedaredge, Eckert, Austin and Cory. In hopes to help those who struggle with getting to the facility during the day, the non-profit group will now be open from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. each Wednesday.
The Thursday and Friday hours, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. respectively, will continue.
Additionally, over 211 families and individuals are currently registered for the annual Christmas food boxes. Volunteers say they expect anywhere from 250-270 total.
Those who qualify can sign-up by visiting the food bank during its distribution hours. Christmas food boxes will be distributed by appointment on Saturday, Dec. 15, from 10 a.m. to noon.
Since starting in 2002, the food bank has grown substantially. What used to be one small room is now several for storage with plenty of refrigerators. The expansion also allows room for the 15-20 volunteers to work freely and effectively.
Thanks to a recent grant the food bank now also has a walk-in cooler. Maria Nakai, volunteer, said the cooler will especially help during the summer when they receive large amounts of fruit that would otherwise spoil within a couple days.
This community assistance program is made possible through contributions from the community, Safeway, Dollar General and Food Bank of the Rockies. The non-profit service is operated entirely by volunteers. Each week volunteers drive to Palisade to transport a trailer of food and other supplies.
During distribution time, particularly with the Christmas food boxes, more volunteers are needed. To volunteer, call 970-856-1125.