A local food pantry is taking a bite out of hunger in Prince William County.
Since its foundation in 1969, Action in Community Through Service (ACTS) in Dumfries has served meals to thousands of people in need.
The original building that housed the service, however, had several restraints.
“It was not arranged like an ideal distribution facility,” Volunteer Bob Chamberlin said.
To help address the issue, ACTS opened a Hunger Prevention Center.
“ACTS came up with the vision of a Hunger Prevention Center that would go well beyond just distributing the food, but really looking at the needs of people from the standpoint of training, nutrition, all kinds of things,” Chamberlin said.
A ribbon cutting ceremony was held at the new facility last month.
ACTS’ food pantry, which was one of its first programs, provides food to more than 600 families each month, according to Center Manager Philip Edney.
Many dedicated community members volunteer their time each week to ensure that community members are fed.
Steve Argubright is among them.
Argubright has been volunteering at ACTS for five years.
Every Friday morning, he’s responsible for picking up food at local grocery stores.
“The reason that I’m doing this volunteer work is [it’s] another way to give back to the community, and do a lot of good for a lot of people,” Argubright said.
Susan Ragon also helps with the food pantry program by adding clients into the computer system.
“I really enjoy volunteering, because I have always felt I need to help other people and so this is one of the type of volunteer efforts that I do,” Ragon said. “And it’s gratifying; they really appreciate it. You know that they appreciate it, you can tell.”
She saw ACTS become founded in 1969 and has watched it grow throughout the years.
“ACTS started out with just a little bit of work that it was doing, and it’s branched out into so many fields,” Ragon said. “It’s just a great organization that helps so many — so many different needs.”
The non-profit is looking some extra set of hands that can help it continue to help others in the community.
Volunteers are needed in the Hunger Prevention Center during the week.
“Here at ACTS, we are so busy,” Volunteer Lisa Provenzano said. “We have a bunch of responsibilities, but we definitely are understaffed. And in order to make the pantry run efficiently, we need more people here so we can stay on task.”
Those interested in volunteering, can fill out an application online.
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