About 50 people gathered outside the headquarters of Mountain Community Resources Thursday, June 13 to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the organization’s expanded food distribution service and to dedicate a mural adorning its downtown Felton building.
As part of a partnership between Community Bridges — Mountain Community Resources’ parent organization — and the Second Harvest Food Bank, the expanded food distribution center can distribute both perishable and dry goods with the newly installed refrigeration and freezing units.
The food storage area is housed in the front of MCR’s building, 6134 Highway 9 in Felton, and features a large, new shelving unit for dry food storage and the new appliances.
Jennifer Anderson-Ochoa, Mountain Community Resources’ director, said that while food distribution has been offered at the organization since November 2011, that families that need those services will now have access to ingredients for balanced meals.
“We’ve been doing distribution for a year and a half,” she said. “But this is the first day of the Food Pantry.”
The pantry is open on the second, third and fourth Thursday of each month at 11 a.m.
Funds to support and create the Food Pantry, Anderson-Ochoa said, came from proceeds from the Redwood Mountain Faire and the Second Harvest Food Bank, and MCR’s internal Italian Affaire and the Phone-a-thon, fundraisers.
Along with the food pantry launch, the event included the unveiling of a large mural on the front of the building.
Created by noted local mural artist Will Northcutt, the mural depicts scenes of community taking place along many Felton landmarks, and features the likenesses of many of the staffers and participants of the organization’s programs.
“We really wanted this to show where we work and who we work with,” said Anderson-Ochoa, who is painted into the mural.
The mural, she said, functions not only as eye candy, but creates awareness of what the organization actually does.
“We wanted to improve our visibility,” Anderson-Ochoa said. “A lot of people didn’t even know we were here.”
Among those on-hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony were Mountain Community Resources’ co-founder Mary Hammer, and Fifth District Santa Cruz County Supervisor Bruce McPherson.
McPherson lauded the organization’s efforts to support those in need in the San Lorenzo Valley community, citing the growing number of families using the programs offered.
“This is really a tribute to the people of the San Lorenzo Valley,” McPherson said. “It is your commitment to helping your neighbors that makes this happen.”
For more information about Mountain Community Resources, visit www.communitybridges.org/mountaincommunity.htm or call 335-6600
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