By Austin Eller Anchor/Reporter

Georgia Mountain Food Bank was recently approved for a $2,951,597 grant from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs that will be used toward improving and growing its facilities.

Kay Blackstock, executive director of Georgia Mountain Food Bank, said they moved into their current facility about 10 years ago, which has given them time to envision how they would like to grow in the future. She said the grant will be used for a project that will greatly expand the quality of their current operations.

“We’ll now have refrigerated docks where we can take food off the truck that’s been in a refrigerated truck and take it right into a refrigerated environment,” Blackstock said. “We can have our produce at a proper temperature so that it doesn’t break down as quickly … we’ll actually have more parking so that our guests, volunteers and visitors, in general, will not have to park along the road.”

Ten warehouse projects for eight Feeding America food banks and a partner distribution organization were approved for the funding at 75% of cost. The Georgia Mountain Food Bank will need a 25% community match, which adds up to about $747,000. Blackstock said those interested in donating can call 770-534-4111 or visit the donation page on their website and leave a note stating the donation is for the warehouse project.

Blackstock said the current Georgia Mountain Food Bank facility is about 22,000 square feet. The project will add 10,000 square feet to their facility once complete. The project must be completed by Dec. 31, 2023, per the timeline of the grant.

“We are ecstatic that we have this opportunity,” Blackstock said. “We had a vision, but you know, it was a ways off. Now, it’s possible to bring that to reality.”

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