The Second Harvest of the Big Bend has a new facility. It’s across from Tallahassee Regional Airport, and is much larger than the old facility, and that means there’s much more shelf space to fill.
Second Harvest’s issues with pest control forced a move, but Gigi Rollini, president-elect of the board of directors says the infestation wasn’t the only factor in the facility’s downfall.
“It’s just the combination of environmental factors, also the changes in residents in the community, into previously vacant buildings that were surrounding our building,” Rollini explained. “All of those things came together to create a perfect storm for us that we couldn’t defend against.”
The new facilities sit along a back road across from the Tallahassee airport. While the location seems remote, officials at Second Harvest say they’re hoping to convince the city to place a bus route along that part of town. They also say being situated off of Capital Circle puts Second Harvest in a better position to send out trucks and receive donations.
In a press conference, interim CEO Jim Croteau, announced a need to raise $200,000 by July 1st in order to continue its services into the fall. He says the situation is dire for the capital’s hungry population.
“Here in Leon County, one in five residents are hungry,” Croteau said. “That’s 11,000 kids in those families that are desperate for additional food to help meet the nutritional requirements that they have. These numbers have increased by almost 20 percent since 2009, and they’re getting worse year by year.”
Rollini says one donor has already pledged $20,000 toward the campaign.