By NICHOLAS SAKELARIS | CoServ
Sometimes a little help can go a long way.
That’s certainly the case at Metrocrest Services where they were offered a $100,000 matching grant by Metrocrest Hospital Authority.
The $100,000 gift – if they could get it – would help the Farmers Branch food pantry at a critical time when so many families and seniors have bare pantries, said Tracy Eubanks, CEO of Metrocrest Services. Since April, Metrocrest has consistently distributed 10,000 meals a day to clients, he said.
As the economic effects of the pandemic continue into 2021, giving has slowed down considerably, forcing Metrocrest to pull from its general fund to meet the need at the pantry every day.
“We were really struggling and worried about hitting the $100,000 to earn the match,” Tracy said.
Then, right before Christmas, Tracy got a call telling them they would receive a $15,000 grant from the CoServ Charitable Foundation. That grant was just the miracle they were looking for, Tracy said.
“We did it because of CoServ’s award,” Tracy said. “The grant written by CoServ has allowed us to push beyond $100,000 to secure that extra $100,000. All of that will be used to help feed families in our community with healthy nutritious food at a time when families are really struggling.”
Even for food pantries, food is harder to come by and more expensive.
“We’re having to find new sources of food and food inevitably costs us more,” Tracy said. “We are having to pay to ship food from other states and we’re competing with grocery stores.”
Jessica Craft, CCF Outreach Coordinator, presented the check to Tracy in person on January 22 at the food pantry in Farmers Branch.
In all, CCF has awarded 21 grants to North Texas nonprofits totaling $392,000 so far in 2021. That’s in addition to the $527,000 CCF distributed to the CCF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund since it was founded in April.
The grants and Relief Fund contributions are funded primarily by Operation Roundup where CoServ Members and Gas Customers round their bill up to the nearest dollar.
What starts out as pennies – about $6 per CoServ account per year – added up to a $15,000 grant for Metrocrest. That grant is enough to purchase over 100,000 pounds of food, or enough to make nearly 85,000 meals, which clients pick up in a drive-thru to maintain social distancing.
And the impact of the grant multiplied again by allowing Metrocrest to secure the $100,000 matching grant. This is the perfect example of CoServ’s Members, Customers and foundation being part of something bigger than ourselves. Metrocrest Services has now received three CCF grants totaling $40,000 since 2018.
“More families need help and for most of them there’s no end in sight,” Tracy said. “We’re going to be helping them well into 2021.”