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Community Food Basket asking for community’s help in warehouse purchase

In the past five years, the Community Food Basket in Idaho Falls has had to change its location three times. Its officials are hoping with the help from the community, it can stay put.

“We’re doing it in conjunction with the 16-month-long capital campaign to buy the warehouse that we’re in,” said Dave Manson executive director of the Community Food Basket in Idaho Falls and the Idaho Falls Soup Kitchen.

Previous landlords and leases, forced the Community Food Basket in Idaho Falls to move around quite a bit. The nonprofit is ready to call its current warehouse its permanent home.

“The ability to buy this warehouse as a legacy for the community is huge for us,” Manson said.

To help reach its goal, the organization is putting on its first-ever fundraiser to help launch the campaign Saturday– the “Community Food Basket Hunger Games.”

“The event really has the opportunity to bring all walks of life together,” said chair for the event and Idaho Falls city Councilwoman, Michelle Ziel-Dingman.

Long-time community food basket advocate Ziel-Dingman said she became involved because she knows first-hand the devastation of food insecurity.

“As a child, our family relied upon some of these services,” Ziel-Dingman said. “Also, as a mother of four to know that I am giving back to an organization where 40% of those who benefit from the Community Food Basket in a given month are children, means a lot to me.

The nonprofit serves 1,000 families a month. In purchasing the property, it aims to be able to feed more people.

“Those dollars we’re spending on the lease will be able to go towards food and fulfilling our mission of feeding the hungry and fighting food insecurity,” Manson said.

Manson has no doubt enough funds can be raised to apply for a matching grant to purchase the warehouse.

“We have people that are coming together to make sure that nobody in our community goes hungry,” Manson said. “There is no place like Idaho Falls when it comes to that. This is an amazing community, and I’m just grateful for that.”

“Community Food Basket Hunger Games” starts at 9 a.m. Saturday at Freeman Park in Idaho Falls.

The area-wide capital campaign for the warehouse purchase will end in the winter of 2020.

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