United Way of Graham and Greenlee Counties presents grant to Our Neighbor’s Farm and Pantry

From left, the United Way of Graham and Greenlee Counties' Denise Benton and Amanda Patterson preset a a $69,000 grant to Our Neighbor's Farm and Pantry's Kai Littrell, Dana Larchick and Kymberlynn Tessman.

SAFFORD — The United Way of Graham and Greenlee Counties wants to make sure that Our Neighbor’s Farm and Pantry is able to meet the needs of the community.

On Friday, the United Way’s Executive Director Denise Benton and Grants Manager Amanda Patterson presented grant funds in the amount of $69,000 to officials with Our Neighbor’s Farm and Pantry.

Receiving the funds were Kai Littrell, Our Neighbor’s Farm and Pantry executive director; Dana Larchick, Pantry manager; and Kymberlynn Tessman, outreach coordinator and Americorps Vista.

Littrell, who assumed the director’s position June 30, said the money will be used to help as she moves the organization forward.

“This money is supposed to be used for some transitional time while I get up to speed, and some salary and some improvements,” Littrell said.

The pantry offers free food to any household on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 10 a.m. to noon and 1-3 p.m. There are no income requirements to visit the pantry, but visits are limited to once a month.

The pantry also offers USDA Senior Boxes of shelf-stable food — including a block of cheese — to residents 60 and older.

The farm provides educational opportunities for area school children, as well as healthy foods to be distributed through the pantry.

Benton said the grant was made available thanks to the donors who support United Way of Graham and Greenlee Counties.

“We receive our donations from Freeport (McMoRan), the employees at Freeport, from the Freeport Foundation, the City of Safford, and many, many private donors,” Benton said.