The newly installed commerical refrigerator at Socorro Storehouse was made possible by a $4,000 grant from the Washington Federal Foundation. Branch Manager Zabrina Montoya and Customer Service Supervisor Jennifer Adam dropped by Storehouse last week to check out the fridge.
John Larson | El Defensor Chieftain

Socorro Storehouse, the county’s emergency food pantry, has been awarded a $4,000 grant from the Washington Federal Foundation to purchase a commercial refrigerator.

“This has really enabled us to expand the types of food that we are taking in from Roadrunner food bank, our main supplier,” Storehouse Executive Director Melissa Ramsey said. “Because we are a Feeding America organization, we have been offered dairy and produce in the past but we’ve had to turn it down, and pretty much go strictly with dry goods. But this beautiful refrigerator has really expanded the variety of food that we can provide to the community now.”

According to local Washington Federal bank manager Zabrina Montoya, the WaFed Foundation has contributed more than $800,000 to 230 organizations throughout eight states. She said the foundation’s purpose was to “facilitate direct giving to community-based nonprofits serving the needs of people with low-and-moderate incomes in our eight-state footprint.

“We’re happy that the Socorro Storehouse is now able to have a commercial, solid door, reach-in refrigerator for cold food storage,” she said. “We know how important Socorro Storehouse is. They work hard here.”

Storehouse currently counts 560 families as regular clients. This is an increase over previous years, and regular weekly client headcounts have increased from 50-60 families to 70-80 families. The Storehouse has been serving the needs of Socorro County for 18 years and is funded entirely by donations.