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Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services (PPCS) members are helping stock Pierce and Pepin County food shelves through the co-op’s charitable foundation Pierce Pepin Cares. At their October meeting, the Pierce Pepin Cares board awarded $16,000 in grants to eight food pantries; each received $2,000—Pierce County Food Pantry, Elmwood Food Pantry, Plum City Food Pantry, Prescott Area Food Shelf, River Falls Food Pantry, Spring Valley Community Food Pantry, Pepin County Food Pantry and Pepin-Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran-Food Pantry.

“Local food shelves are a critical resource in our community,” said Nate Boettcher, PPCS president and CEO.  “The holidays can be an especially difficult time, and we know that many families are still trying to recover from losses that occurred over the past 18 months because of the pandemic. The Pierce Pepin Cares board acted on behalf of PPCS members to support the important work of the food shelves.”

The impact of cash donations to the food pantries is substantial.  On a dollar-for-dollar conversion, for every $1 donated they can obtain up to $7 in food purchases for the pantries. 

PPCS members fund Pierce Pepin Cares by participating in Operation Round Up and rounding up their electric bills to the nearest dollar each month or donating a specific dollar amount.  The program provides charitable contributions to nonprofit organizations that offer programs and support projects to enhance the quality of life for those within the communities served by the cooperative. 

Pierce Pepin Cares grants are awarded quarterly by the Pierce Pepin Cares board of directors. Nonprofit organizations interested in applying may visit or call 800-924-2133 for information. The next application deadline is December 15.