Grocery Outlet partners with local food bank for summer drive

The Kenmore Grocery Outlet will be running a food donation drive through the end of July, a tradition they have been continuing for seven years.

The Kenmore Grocery Outlet will be running a food donation drive through the end of July, a tradition they have been continuing for seven years.

Judy Bartlow owns the store and said she enjoys holding the food drive.

“I just love to give back and there’s so many food insecurities around here,” she said. “I think it’s really an important part of what we do in the community is try to give back.”

How it works is employees put together bags of food costing around $5, often times these bags contain ingredients for one full meal.

She said the bags usually cost a little more than $5, but the store absorbs the cost.

These bags can then be ‘purchased’ by customers by donation and they’re sent to a food bank at Cedar Park Northshore Church.

“We’ll look around the store and get a bill stretcher type of item that will give them the most with that item,” Bartlow said.

These items can range from rice and pasta sauce to tuna and peanut butter.

Customers can also donate money in any denomination which will be donated directly to the food bank.

On July 22, a food truck was outside the store and Bartlow hoped to fill it with donated food bags.

Last year the food drive brought in more than $3,000 in cash and filled the truck, pus around 250 bags.

Bartlow said she’s hoping for a similar outpouring this year.

“We love the community, and we love to give back,” she said.

And the help is greatly appreciated, said Nancy Jacobsen, whose in charge of running the food bank at Cedar Park Northshore Church.

She said they serve around 53 area families and are open every Monday for an hour at 6 p.m.

“It’s an amazing work that they do in opening up their store to have this drive and allowing customers to donate food to us,” she said. “We’re very thankful and happy to be in a partnership with them this month.”

Currently, the food bank can provide around two or three days worth of food, but said as they expand they hope to offer larger quantities of food to those in need and bring in more storage space.

Common items they offer are canned and boxed foods, bakery items and some limited fruits and vegetables.

Cedar Park Northshore Church is located at 18737 68th Avenue Northeast in Kenmore.

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