Local Organization Donates Thousands Of Dollars To Rogers County Food Pantries


Tuesday, January 19th 2021, 4:38 pm
By: Mallory Thomas


Rogers County -

Three Rogers County food pantries are restocking their shelves thanks to generous donations from the Claremore Elks Lodge.

The Elks Lodge is donating thousands of dollars to help feed those in need.

The Claremore Elks Lodge donated to different organizations every year and this year, they chose the local food banks. 

“Like all the pantries, we are getting less donations; so, this will allow us to buy more of the food that we’re not getting," said Linda Polson.

Polson is the Co-director of the food banks in First United Methodist Church of Claremore. She said in December alone, they gave away 1,300 boxes of food. 

“We did some research, and they were struggling. So, we sat down and talked to them, saw what their needs were, and saw how we can help. We wrote up the grant, and [it] was approved," said Larry East with the Claremore Elks Lodge.

East said they are splitting $8,000 in grant money between the church's food bank, Light of Hope, and the Roger's County jail food pantry, which is open to the public. 

“It’s in the lobby of the Amos G. Ward Detention Center. The lobby is always open, and you can just come in, it’s under surveillance, and it’s kind of the honor system. You can take what you need," said Deputy Keri Thomas. 

All three of the pantries work together to feed as many Rogers County families as they can. 

“We try to average about 20 to 25 families now those families are growing, and I don’t think the community really realizes that the impact of COVID-19 and the job loss and how much it’s affected families," said Layla Freeman.

Layla Freeman with Light of Hope said they help families of all sizes, one of their largest has 14 people. 

“The needs are greater than they’ve ever been. So, this donation is going to allow us to buy so many groceries for our pantry," said Freeman.