Community makes Country Roads Food Drive a success

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Local organizations are making efforts to help West Virginia residents during the COVID-19 crisis.

Across the Mountain State Tuesday, parent company of MetroNews, West Virginia Radio Corporation, along with the United Way, Pickering Associates and Kroger worked together to collect donations for the Country Roads Food Drive. At the end of collections, the final count number of food and money given by West Virginians to those less fortunate is considered impressive.

“We raised over $53,000 and 25 tons of food across the state,” West Virginia Radio Corporation Promotions Manager, Rachelle Beatty said.

The donations were collected at various Kroger and United Way locations across the Mountain State. With the various community efforts across West Virginia, several large donations were given by local organizations. While both Pickering and Kroger both made $10,000 cash donations, other regional businesses found other ways to donate in creative ways.

“The Pepsi plant in Fairmont pulled up with a big tractor-trailor full of drinks and dropped it off,” Beatty said,”The outpouring of generosity was just amazing.”

The money and food donations, will go directly to regional food pantries across the state, who have been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. As a result of West Virginia schools being closed for the rest of the year as well as near total state shutdown as a result of the pandemic, the normal food supplies have taken a significant hit as a result of the uncertainty.

“It will be split up between the United Ways across the state and then distributed to individual food pantries in need,” Beatty said.

Fortunately and unfortunately, West Virginia has had a mixed effect as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Even though the number of infected residents dwarfs in comparison to neighboring states, efforts to reopen the states appear to continue to move cautiously after state COVID-19 czar Dr. Clay Marsh advised to reconsider reopening dates on Tuesday. With economic concerns already high for the state and with little clarity, the donations are more important than ever.

“I knew it was going to be big,” Beatty said,”But, it was way bigger than I expected, just the generosity of everybody.”