COOKEVILLE – All good things must come to an end. The Grocery Giveaway organized by Cookeville Strong, The TTU Food Pantry and Putnam County Parks and Recreation has concluded their distribution ahead of their expected end date of April 30th because the food allotted for the month of April has ran out. At the close of last week’s distribution, the groups had handed out 14,300 food boxes since the program started in February.
Event co-organizer Katelyn Steakley of Cookeville Strong said, “We are disheartened that the food has run out ahead of our anticipated end date, but we are thankful we were able to serve over 14,000 food boxes to individuals living in our community and region.” She added, “This distribution would not have been possible without the help we received from area nonprofits, community groups, businesses and churches.”
The events were made possible through contributions and volunteer efforts from TTU Food Pantry, Putnam County Parks and Rec Staff, TTU Football Players and Coaching Staff, Life Church, TTU Service Learning Students and interns (Rachel Craighead, Baylee Dalton, Douglas Freeman, Destiny Lee and Ashley Muench), Rotary, J and S Construction, Chad McDonald, Blair Dudley (with Hip Cookeville), Paul Donadio, Revo and Maddie Larsen, Flowserve, and The River Community Church.
Michelle Huddleston, the director of the TTU Food Pantry and event co-organizer concluded, “We are thankful for each person who contributed to the event, and for our partnership with Breakthru Nashville, which made this event possible.”
The USDA has permanently ended the Farmers to Family Food Box program, which provided the food for the weekly grocery giveaway.