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Davis Journal

County comes together to provide for needy children

Jul 08, 2021 02:59PM ● By Becky Ginos

Davis County Assessor’s Office employees assemble pantry packs at the Davis Conference Center for the Bountiful Food Pantry. Courtesy

FARMINGTON—The Bountiful Food Pantry delivers 3,000 pantry packs a week to schools for children to take home so they’ll have something to eat over the weekend. The county came together to meet that need by collecting enough food for 2,400 packs.

“Back in 2015 the Assessor’s Office decided to hold a team building activity and make it an annual tradition,” said Chief Deputy Assessor Lisa Manning, who helped organize the event. “At first we did more fun things but in 2018 we decided to do a service project. We worked with GiGi’s Playhouse, an organization that helps kids with Down Syndrome.”

They decided to do a service project every other year, she said. “After we finished in 2019 we planned to do pantry packs in 2020. Then COVID hit and we couldn’t do it. So this year we said, ‘let’s do pantry packs.’”

At first it was just going to be the Assessor’s Office, Manning said. “But there’s only 40 of us and that wasn’t enough for as much as we wanted to do so we decided to invite all Davis County employees to participate.”

In May, Manning sent out an email that specifically detailed what was needed. “Every Friday we would go around and pick up the donations,” she said. “I think every department had at least one donation and when you consider that was senior centers, libraries, the Sheriff’s Office – that’s a lot of participation from all different departments. Our goal was 1,000 but we saw that was going to be way too low so we decided to try for 1,600. We had 2,400 by the end.”

The Sheriff’s Office turned it into a competition, said Manning. “The commission office worked with Smith’s to help provide their contribution. Most departments had a box in the office and we’d look in the box each Friday and take what was there.”

“I got a hold of Smith’s,” said Commission Chair Bob Stevenson. “They have a program where they donate to a good cause. They’d donated to the food pantry before and they donated enough to us for 200 packs. Smith’s is a very, very city conscious organization to reach out to help those in need. We got all the stuff and they picked it up.”

There are a lot more needy children and families in the county than people realize, he said. “It’s a blessing in the county that we have people who are willing to give and take care of their neighbors. That’s really a Christ Like attitude.”

Manning stored all the donations in her living room. “It was completely full,” she said. “It took about 40 minutes to take it out of my house and bring it from the trucks into the Conference Center where we assembled the packs.”

They loaded the completed packs onto two trucks from the Bountiful Food Pantry. “Then the trucks went back to the pantry who distributes them to children who need them,” Manning said. “According to the pantry they deliver 3,000 pantry packs each week. There was a tiny path between food in my living room and stacks as tall as I am. That’s not even quite enough for a week. It’s heartbreaking.”