Kentucky Harvest may have to close its doors due to lack of donations
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A non-profit group that helps feed families in crisis is facing an emergency of its own.
After nearly 30 years serving the community, Kentucky Harvest may close its doors.
Friday morning's delivery at "Feed the City" came right on time.
"We feed a free meal everyday, Monday through Saturday, to the community," said Larry Coleman, executive director of Feed the City. "Also, we have an emergency food box giveaway for families in crisis -- and during summer, we feed the youth. When they're out of school, sometimes they don't get a meal."
Coleman says the work could not happen without Kentucky Harvest. The organization shuttles food donations from local restaurants and suppliers to shelters, food pantries and churches to feed needy families.
Althea Giles knows the struggle first hand. The cook from Feed the City was once a customer.
"I wasn't doing well," Giles said.
But that work at Kentucky Harvest is in jeopardy.
"We're in a dire state," said Brent Smith, the Kentucky Harvest Board chairman. "We're inside four months operating cash left before we have to cease operation."
How did it happen?
"I think people just see us as a food transporter...and so when people hear Kentucky Harvest is struggling, they donate food," Smith said.
The non-profit may also be caught under the cloud of its founder. Stan Curtis, a well known Louisville philanthropist, ended up in federal prison for stealing from one of the charities he launched.
"Sometimes people ask if it's the same thing, and we say, 'No, that was USA Harvest. We're Kentucky Harvest, and our mission is to feed the less fortunate," Smith said.
To continue the mission the non-profit has launched its first capital campaign. Kentucky Harvest runs on about $100,000 a year. It's trying to find 20 businesses to give $5,000 or 400 people to donate $25 a month.
"We've had three businesses step up already," Smith said. "Papa John's, L&M Federal Credit Union and Thorntons."
If they don't get more, the loss could have a tremendous ripple effect. Kentucky Harvest serves 100 organizations in the Louisville area, getting $2 million pounds of food into hungry hands
"There's a great concern," Coleman said, adding that there must be a harvest to continue feeding the city.
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