Fort Mill Times

Lake Wylie businesses helping feed local needs

Staff reports

Darci Bly, right, owner of Anytime Fitness in Lake Wylie, and manager Amy Rose at the food donation table for Clover Area Assistance Center. The gym is waiving joining fees and monthly dues through the end of October to anyone who brings in a full grocery bag of non-perishable food items.
Darci Bly, right, owner of Anytime Fitness in Lake Wylie, and manager Amy Rose at the food donation table for Clover Area Assistance Center. The gym is waiving joining fees and monthly dues through the end of October to anyone who brings in a full grocery bag of non-perishable food items. COURTESY OF KAREN VAN VIERSSEN

Clover Area Assistance Center expanded its “Keep It Local! Feed the Need In Our Community” campaign this month by canvassing Clover and Lake Wylie businesses seeking support and raising awareness.

“Everyone has been responsive and welcoming, so far,” said Bill Dillon, treasurer for CAAC Board of Directors and Keep It Local volunteer. “It is obvious CAAC already has a great deal of support in the community.”

Support has come in many forms.

“Our goal has not only been to get food for the Full Choice Pantry, but even more importantly, to raise awareness about food insecurity and hunger that exists right here where we live,” said Connie Johnson, campaign coordinator.

Darci Bly, owner of Anytime Fitness in Lake Wylie, is waiving joining fees and monthly dues through the end of October for everyone who brings in a full grocery bag of non-perishable food items.

Gentlemen’s Cut is offering $2 off every haircut through the end of October to customers who bring in canned or boxed food.

Frank Keefe, owner of Bagel Boat, has offered to donate end -of-day bagels several times a week, with Bill Dillon arranging for volunteers from River Hills to do the regular pick-up and delivery.

“All we have to do is freeze the bagels and clients can simply reheat them or pop them in a toaster and they will be as fresh as the day they were made,” said Karen van Vierssen, CAAC executive director.

The campaign continues through October. Volunteers Dillon; Marcia Dickson, secretary of the Board of Directors; Sandy Eaton; Rose Stapleton; and Audra Van Wie are providing businesses with a packet of information with facts about food insecurity and ways a business can help. Johnson can help set up food drives, and brings signs, handouts and a collection bin.

“We definitely have a plan in place,” Johnson said. “Karen and I have been working on developing materials, ideas and processes for months so we can help businesses get involved at the level they are most comfortable with.”

For more information, email keepitlocalcaac@gmail.com or call 803-627-9654.

Clover Area Assistance Center is nonprofit serving those in need in Clover and Lake Wylie with food, financial assistance, and education, for more than 15 years. CAAC is at 1130 Highway 55 E. in Clover. Call 803-222-4837.

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