Dayton Food Pantry director Freida Carbery says the "small but mighty" pantry is serving 1,400 people a month now.
The pantry, whose motto is "Freely we share", is at 4 Enterprise Way off of Highway 50 in Dayton, and is open for emergency food needs from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The regular distribution day is from noon to 4 p.m. on the third Saturday of each month at Sutro Elementary School, 190 Dayton Village Parkway. The Lyon School District allowed the Pantry to use the school multi-purpose room to accommodate the hundreds of families who arrive on distribution day.
On the main distribution day, the pantry also invites participation by other groups that promote community volunteerism or provide services. This year, various groups have offered employment and training information, free flu shots, farmers' markets coupons for children, books, coats, pet food, and connections to local service clubs such as Kiwanis.
For the second year in a row, Carson City Health and Human Services will offer free flu shots, on Oct. 15.
The contributions from nearly every part of the community make the thriving pantry's existence possible, Carbery says.
"With this kind of support, we are reinvigorated to strive to meet the challenge each and every day and continue to be humbled by the generosity and compassion of the people of Dayton, and our neighbors in the surrounding communities," she said.
The following individuals and organizations keep the Pantry running:
• Volunteers who run the day-to-day operations of the food bank, unload deliveries, fill boxes, distribute and sort emergency food, fill backpacks with weekend food for students in local schools, write thank-you notes to donors, and organize volunteer labor.
• The Healthy Communities Coalition, a private nonprofit, which writes grants to fund liability insurance and other necessities required for food pantries and volunteers, tracks data, trains volunteers and completes reports.
• BCB Ventures, a local business that has donated use of the building at 4 Enterprise Way for several years and assists with electricity.
• The Food Bank of Northern Nevada, which delivers donated food and provides technical assistance.
• Local clubs, schools, businesses and churches that help with freezer space, trash removal, repairs, fundraisers, space for distribution events, and food drives.
• The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which provides commodities such as canned vegetables, beans and tuna each month.
• Lyon County Utilities, which covers the costs of water for the Pantry building.