At River Street Food Pantry, families give back

Chad Colba and his family have benefited from the River Street Food Pantry in Carthage -- and they give back, too.
Chad Colba and his family have benefited from the River Street Food Pantry in Carthage — and they give back, too.

He could’ve thrown in the towel a long time ago but refused. This is Chad Colba’s life: Wife struck by cancer, himself awaiting medical clearance to return to work and all while trying to feed his son.

And yet talk about being stubborn — in a positive way. Folks can find him not only in line but also regularly assisting the non-profit River Street Food Pantry in Carthage.

“I want to give back, but I don’t have the money to help and I can’t just sit at home and do nothing,” Colba said. “This is a positive place for me to be. I am blessed to help a ministry that feeds so many per month.”

Talk about a success story of the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper.

River Street Food Pantry is returning for a third year to the PGA Web.com Tour event, which for the past 25 years has raised millions of dollars for Ozark-area charities. The pantry has turned its dollars from the PCCC into real help.

In other words, businesses and golf fans who support the PCCC should know their dollars can be extremely effective – and positive. Businesses can sponsor various events of the PCCC and also donate gift cards valued at least $25 each.

For example, the purchase of a $25 TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes ticket goes directly to the charity selling the ticket. Even better, fans who purchase the tickets not only receive entry into the tournament – it’s considered the Triple-A circuit of pro golf — but also can win gift cards as well as $10,000 and even a 2015 Ford Mustang.

“We were able to purchase food at a reduced rate that supplied food to hungry families in southwest Missouri for nine months because of the Price Cutter Charity Championship,” said Regina Shank, Director of River Street Food Pantry. “We are thankful to be chosen as one of the charities, blessed by this generous group of people.”

SUPPORTING THE PCCC = SUPPORTING CHARITIES

  • HELP the River Street Food Pantry: Mainly, the organization is always in need of donations to supply food for the needy in southwest Missouri.
  • FOR BUSINESES: such as restaurants, clothing stores and entertainment stops, donate a gift card with at least a $25 value in the name of your charity of choice to benefit them in the Golf Ball Charity Auction.
  • BUSINESS SPONSORSHIPS: Businesses also can support the PCCC through various sponsorships, such as the daily newsletter, website or through several events such as a dozen Pro-Ams.
  • FOR GOLF FANS: The purchase of a $25 ticket means a four-day pass to the PCCC on Aug. 13-16 at Highland Springs Country Club as well as daily chances to win gift cards from the local businesses. You’re also automatically entered to win a $10,000 prize and a 2015 Ford Mustang.
  • FOR TICKETS: Contact the local charity of your choice, simply because they receive revenue directly from those TLC Property Charity Sweepstakes tickets marked with their names.
  • CONTACTS: To assist the River Street Food Pantry, call 417-359-8800 or visit its website at riverstreetfoodpantry.com. To contact, the Price Cutter Charity Championship staff, call 417-887-3400.

About the River Street Food Pantry

Regina Shank directs the River Street Food Pantry in Carthage.
Regina Shank directs the River Street Food Pantry.

Colba is a volunteer now at the Pantry, having received assistance when the non-profit was located in a back parking lot off the Carthage square.

His wife, Anita, eventually was diagnosed with cancer, and the family fell on hard financial times. Fortunately, she is on the road to recovery, but times remain difficult. They also are feeding their son, Jacob, and granddaughter Hailey, as all attend the Wednesday hot meal. Anita is taking online courses.

“The people here,” Colba said, “are genuine, caring and real.”

River Street Food Pantry is a charitable non-profit organization based in Carthage. It’s devoted to feeding the hungry in southwest Missouri, and that can be a challenge these days. Almost 18 percent of people in Jasper County don’t know where their next meal is coming from – a situation called food insecurity.

Fortunately, the Pantry serves about 400 families a month by appointment. The services reach older adults with limited incomes and families with children that are food insecure.

The Pantry asks that families schedule an appointment, at which time they’ll be able to shop for a grocery cart of food, including government commodities, diapers if needed and feminine hygiene products. At the end of the shopping trip, if they would like prayer, they have an opportunity to receive prayer.

During summer months, the River Street Food Pantry hosts a program called Kids’ Café, which feeds kids a free lunch on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. It’s a way to help when school is out of session. The pantry also hands out backpacks of food to the kids on Fridays as way to help them get through the weekend.

“Our purpose is to feed, equip, empower and restore hope to those who are living in poverty and others who are temporarily in need,” the pantry notes. “We are not here to enable but to empower resources, encouragement and practice help through the provision of food, diapers, teaching and training.”