Honey Brook family holds drive to supply Chester County Food Bank

Main office at John's Supply & Rental in Honey Brook photo courtesy of John's Supply

The Chester County Food Bank will be able to help feed more Honey Brook families in need of assistance this holiday season thanks in part to a food drive spearheaded by the Seldomridge family, owners of John’s Supply and Rental.

The family is friends with Bob MacNeill, president of the food bank, who told them how great the need is for food in the area. That’s what inspired them to start the food drive two years ago.

In the drive’s first two years, the family kept a donation box in John’s Supply, and Stoltzfus Market participated with a donation cart in their store.

This year, the Seldomridge family has also enlisted the help of other local businesses in collecting donations for the cause. In addition to the original two locations, donation boxes will be available at Honey Brook Pharmacy, September Farm, Good Food Store, Route 10 Roadside Market, Honey Brook Golf Course and M&T Bank.

The drive runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 13. On Dec. 14, John’s Supply will host a food truck from the Chester County Food Bank and hold one last push for donations. On that day, residents can also bring turkeys to donate.

“They’re good to work with,” Debbie Elmer, whose father owns John’s Supply, said of the food bank. “They bring us the truck, they’re very cooperative, and anything they can do to help you and get the word out, they’ll do.

“And obviously they have their heart in the right place, or they wouldn’t be doing what they’re doing,” she added.

“John’s Supply is a wonderful community partner who’s food drive will help hundreds of residents in need,” Phoebe Kitson, program manager for Chester County Food Bank, said. “The food that they will collect will have a direct impact on the families we support in the Honey Brook area.”

Despite being the wealthiest county in Pennsylvania, Chester County has a serious need for food among its population.

“We know that one in eight residents are experiencing food insecurities every day,” she said. “In other words, they do not know how they will be able to pay for their next meal. Through generous companies like John’s Supply in the community, we will be able to help make sure no one goes hungry in our area.”

And the community has stepped up in a big way to help fulfill that goal, Elmer said.

“We’ve had an overwhelming response, and each year it gets bigger,” she said. Last year, the drive brought in about 963 pounds of non-perishable goods, as well as monetary donations and turkeys.

Elmer added that the food bank also takes grocery store gift cards to use to purchase what they need.

Last year, she recalled, one man came in at the last minute on the last day of the drive and made a generous monetary donation, which allowed the food bank to meet its turkey goal to feed all the local families in need.

Even people who don’t have a lot themselves give what they can, Elmer said.

“I think the most important thing is, so many of us are so very fortunate, and we don’t know what is going on in our neighbors’ homes,” Elmer said. “It’s something we should think about every time of the year.”