Tim Rich, director of Welcome Home, and Lindsay Young Lopez, executive director of The Food Bank.

Tim Rich, director of Welcome Home, and Lindsay Young Lopez, executive director of The Food Bank.

Homeless Veterans in need of shelter will now also find a hot meal, thanks to a new partnership that will save Welcome Home, Inc., money on food expenses.

The Food Bank has taken Welcome Home on as a partner agency and will provide food for Veterans living there at no charge to them or the organization. That means Welcome Home will be able to allocate its resources toward other expenses.

“We are thrilled to be part of efforts that help homeless Veterans in their transition back into
society,” says Lindsay Young Lopez, executive director of The Food Bank. “Our heroes in need
deserve nutritious, consistent meals, and we are delighted to be the agency providing that service.”

The partnership becomes effective when Welcome Home moves into its new $8.1 million campus on Rangeline Street in Columbia next month. The facility will provide 29 transitional housing rooms.

This is not the first time The Food Bank has brought attention to Veterans living at or below poverty. The Food Bank has been providing VIP Veteran Packs to Welcome Home since last year. The VIP Veteran Pack Program began in May 2016 as a pilot program in Boone County. With funding from Veterans United, 125 packs of ready-to-eat meals and personal care
items are also distributed monthly at Central Pantry and Patriot Place, an apartment complex for Veterans.

Bringing Welcome Home and The Food Bank together through a formal partnership is a natural fit, says Tim Rich, the executive director of Welcome Home who previously served as The Food Bank’s associate director.

“Agencies and partners working together is what makes Columbia a great community,” he says.
The Veterans’ shelter is The Food Bank’s 137th partner agency.

“When you support The Food Bank, you are also supporting so many wonderful organizations such as Welcome Home,” Lopez said. “We are proud to provide the food needed to feed residents there.”