Food Shelf makes surprise delivery to Valley View Apartments

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Clayton County Food Shelf Director Utoni Ruff (left) places boxes of groceries in a cart for Chris Meyer to deliver to residents at Valley View Apartments, in McGregor. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Residents at McGregor’s Valley View Apartments received a surprise supply of groceries and other household staples last week, thanks to the Clayton County Food Shelf. 

Food Shelf Director Utoni Ruff made the delivery after being contacted by Chris Meyer, who, with husband Bob, has managed the senior housing complex for 20 years.

“They’re like family,” Meyer said. “We were concerned if they had enough to eat because so many don’t want to go out [due to the COVID-19 pandemic].”

According to Ruff, each household received ground venison, brats and buns, bread, milk, eggs, canned vegetables and fruit, cereal, oatmeal, macaroni and cheese, pasta, peanut butter, tuna, gelatin, pudding and cake mix, along with toilet paper, paper towel, hand and dish soap, toothpaste and shampoo. Valley View’s 13 residents also had a special treat: Girl Scout cookies courtesy of the troop in Elkader.

“We’re so fortunate to have the food shelf,” said Meyer.

With kids home from school, some workers unemployed and senior meal sites closed, there’s been a greater need. Ruff said the Clayton County Food Shelf has gone from helping 85 families per month prior to the pandemic to 15 per day since March 16.

The Clayton County Food Shelf is open Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m., with precautions in place to protect Ruff and visitors. Ruff will also make limited contact deliveries if need be.

The food shelf is located at 100 W. Hill St., in St. Olaf, and can also be reached at (563) 783-7794. Monetary donations can be mailed to Clayton County Food Shelf, P.O. Box 48, St. Olaf, IA 52072.

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