Assistance and Resource Ministries obtains delivery truck through grant

Food pantries often rely heavily on donations from concerned citizens groups or other official organizations just to stay afloat, let alone be able to provide for the members of the community they need to serve on a regular basis. Tuesday, one such organization cashed in on a grant that they said will immensely improve their ability to serve the people who need it the most.

Elizabethton’s Assistance and Resource Ministries recently received a $10,000 grant from Second Harvest Food Bank, and the board decided to use that money to purchase a delivery truck to expand its reach in the community.

Board member Cheri Miller said the truck will make the daily work they do that much easier.

“It is a great blessing,” Miller said.

Roughly half the length of an 18-wheeler, the truck features a lift that will let users load and unload the palettes worth of food they receive significantly easier.

“At the time of the grant, ARM did not have a vehicle to haul food and other items to our food pantry,” board member Scott Reynolds said.

Previously, the director’s husband made the deliveries himself in his own vehicle.

The grant itself ARM received is called the Eddie Jack Miller Estate Grant, named after a former resident of Elizabethton.

“He had a great passion for people in need,” Miller said. “He left part of his estate to help feed the people of Carter County, and this truck will help us do that.”

The truck currently has the ARM logo on the side, but that is not all the food pantry has in the works for the truck. They said they plan to turn it into a mobile food pantry, able to better serve people in need who might be unable to make the trip to the pantry itself.

ARM serves hundreds of families on a yearly basis, providing food and other resources including clothes to people in need. Chairperson of the board Elizabeth Banks said they regularly work with Second Harvest.

“We are grateful to Second Harvest for negotiating this,” Banks said.

Reynolds said ARM should remember Eddie Jack Miller’s legacy through grants such as this.

“Miller left a lasting legacy to the community where he lived and through the funds the purchase of this truck is providing for people throughout Carter County and Elizabethton,” he said.

Those interested in donating to or volunteering at ARM can do so by contacting them at 423-542-0919 or in person at 714 West C Street in Elizabethton.

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