Budget cuts have hit the Ron Wood Family Resource Center's Food Closet hard.
The closet lost 28 percent of its food budget this year, but the need in the past year has increased by
35 percent, said executive director Joyce Buckingham.
Then, in walked Tim Salyer of Washoe Valley.
A retired general contractor, Salyer had an idea. In January, funded with his own money, Salyer started the nonprofit "Hungry Kids Organic Foods" with the goal of raising funds to purchase and provide high-nutrition organic foods and make it available to local needy children and their families.
"Now that I'm retired, I have a lot more time and was looking for a project where I could give back," he said. "I was thinking if we just start giving kids better foods, they are going to get the nutrients and vitamins they need."
When Salyer began to look for a food bank in need, he came upon Ron Wood.
"It's marvelous. Tim's wonderful. He found out what kind of need, and what kind of organization we have and he asked me if he could help," said Buckingham.
Each month, Ron Wood's food closet feeds 3,500 people. The food comes in on Wednesday, and by Wednesday evening, its almost gone, said Buckingham.
Salyer said the saddest part for him was to see the coolers and freezers in the pantry empty.
In February, Salyer and his wife Tatiana sent out 250 letters to
people in California and Nevada asking for donations, including donated food, to help improve the diets of the undernourished and needy children in our communities. Thus far, they've received little response.
"Our efforts are designed to partner with Certified Organic Farmers in California and Northern Nevada to help give them recognition and help educate the community to the value of consuming organic foods and the nutritional benefits," said Salyer.
"What we're trying to get is farm-grown, organic, high-nutrition, non-processed foods," he said. "Kids do not have nutritional choices as do many adults and we will help improve their diets."
To help "Hungry Kids Organic Foods," visit www.hungrykidsorganicfoods.com or contact Salyer at firstname.lastname@example.org or (775) 671-2828.
Donations can be sent to "Hungry Kids" at 3280 Old US Highway 395 N., Washoe Valley, Nev., 89704.
"We also hope that some local churches, clubs and business organizations might consider partnering with us on of their fundraisers if they found out about our mission," said Salyer.
His timing couldn't be better, said Buckingham. Ron Wood's food closet needs all the help it can get.
"We're really short. We're going to have to dip into our discretionary funds for the center to just make it till July 1," she said.
To donate directly to the Ron Wood Family Resource Center which benefits families in Carson City and Storey and Douglas counties, visit ronwoodcenter.org.