CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The Chesterfield Food Bank Outreach Center canceled its last distribution of the year, saying the weather could have put the food drive in jeopardy.
A Facebook post from the food bank Friday afternoon read, “Tonight’s distribution is canceled due to freezing weather conditions. Though this decision is made with a heavy heart ♥️ we believe it is the safest for both our clients & volunteers 🙏🏽 .”
Nicholas Jenkins, the nonprofit’s assistant executive director, said the decision was about keeping the volunteers and those who are in need safe.
“With the wind chill and the wind that’s blowing and how cold it is, inhaling that, the effects it could have on your skin,” he said.
The Stormtracker 8News team forecasted strong winds and freezing temperatures Friday night. Heavy rain Friday morning could create opportunities for black ice on the roads.
Jenkins said he monitored the weather throughout the day and didn’t come to this decision lightly.
“We wanted to get one more in for this year, and we spent time promoting it, getting it ready,” he said.
“If we have 400 cars in our back lot, someone’s car dies or the battery — I think we jumped like six or seven cars last Friday,” he added. “Just a normal thing, but you add in the colder elements and how that impacts the vehicles as well, so it would lead into a potentially a very unfavorable situation.”
Jenkins said the Chesterfield Food Bank Outreach Center’s next food distribution is on Jan. 6, 2023.
“For us, though, it’s size. We serve so many. We have so many volunteers, so many people coming in that really leaves a lot of due diligence on our end to provide a safe environment,” he added.
For those who are looking for some other options, Jenkins said A Place of Miracles Cafe in Richmond is serving food Friday afternoon, as well as the Beacon Hill Church in Petersburg.