Nearly 1,000 pounds of venison donated to Roanoke food pantry

Published: Dec. 9, 2021 at 3:16 PM EST
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BEDFORD COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - Area organizations and volunteers across the state team up every year and have provided millions with lean, high protein red meat.

“Meat is one of the hardest things for the folks to get mainly because of the cost and source, they just don’t have it,” explains 82nd Airborne Christian Soldiers Food Pantry’s director, Pastor Dave Burgess. “So, we try to give as much as we can to give out to the public.”

Enter Virginia Hunters for the Hungry, a 30-year-old organization dedicated to donating thousands of pounds of venison each year with the help of 70 processors and more than 60 distribution sites.

Hunters donate their game, and the organization pays to process the meat, providing the meals for free.

Each element in the process is critical to provide safe, healthy meals.

“We have to be sure to take proper care of the deer when they come in,” says Tim Overstreet of Backroad Butcher Meat Company. “They are cooled in the cooler until we get to them. Then we process them and then they go into another cooler until they’re ready to go out frozen.”

Thursday, more than 900 pounds of venison was donated to the Christian Soldiers Food Pantry in Roanoke.

“We hear again and again that if it weren’t for us, that they wouldn’t be able to feed their families,” adds Burgess. “A lot of people now have to choose between medicine and groceries and food. It’s just a great help to be able to feed the folks in Roanoke and Vinton.”

“It’s just to nice to know that you go to work every day and what you do makes a difference in somebody’s life in the most noble of ways, and that’s by giving them something to eat,” says Gary Arrington, Director, Hunters for the Hungry. “What a great way for a hunter to give back and take care of our most precious resource, and that’s our fellow man.”

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