By Aaron Payne | January 14, 2016 | WV Metro News
BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — An oil and gas company operating in North Central West Virginia is giving back to the community by lifting up those who help others.
Antero Resources gathered around 20 food banks from Doddridge, Harrison, Ritchie and Tyler Counties together Thursday to present each of them with
a free lunch and a check.
“We really have kinda divided the funds up, $18,000 across the four counties,” said Al Shopp, Chief Administrative Officer and Regional Senior Vice-President of Appalachia with Antero. “The counties that have fewer food banks, checks are a little bit bigger where they have a lot of food banks. Our goal was to get to about $5,000 a county.”
To those representing the organizations in attendance, like Susan Pelikan with the Admas House Ministries out of Middlebourne in Tyler County, the donation will help them feed families and provide other support.
“To be able to pay for the assistance for utilities and prescriptions, we need the funding to help for that,” Pelikan said. “And to buy the extra food that we don’t always get from Mountaineer Food Bank, this helps out tremendously.”
Like most food banks, Adams House Ministries tries to provide food that is non-perishable, easy to make and as nutritious as possible under their budgets.
While the Mountaineer Food Bank provides these types of food as often as possible, they can’t always provide items such as macaroni and cheese, to use an example Pelikan provided.
“I love to see large companies give back to the community, I think it’s fantastic,” she said. “I think everybody should be so lucky to have somebody give back to the community the way they’re giving back.”
The company was looking for a way to give back to the communities that they operate in and Shopp was astounded to find that the route they took was not very traveled.
“One of the groups here today said that this is only the third time since they’ve been open they’ve ever got a corporate donation, and that’s just not right,” he said. “We need to step up, we need to do our jobs. Our people and employees live in these communities, and our landowners live in these communities.”
Another reason to bring the food banks together for the luncheon was to provide an opportunity to compare notes. Shopp said he couldn’t think of a time this many organizations were in the same building and hoped connections would be made and strengthened to the benefit of the communities.