Community, Healthcare, Latest News, News

MHP employees donate to food pantry

KINGWOOD — Mon Health Preston Memorial Hospital employees donated $700 to help support Food for Preston in the current time of need.

The donation comes from a seven-year tradition originating from a notion of Melissa Lockwood, president and CEO of Preston Memorial Hospital.

“Seven years ago, when updating computers throughout the hospital, I brainstormed a way to turn this process into something that could benefit multiple people,” Lockwood said. “After some thought, I decided to sell the gently used computers to employees in exchange for a small donation to the Food for Preston Backpack Program. We have continued this tradition over the past seven years, in addition to hosting food drives each winter and painting bowls for their annual Empty Bowls fundraiser. We are proud to provide support to Food for Preston whenever possible.”

Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, food pantries across the nation are seeing a surge in individuals needing assistance, naturally causing an increased need for donations. Some organizations are running low on food, while others need volunteers to help sort, pack and distribute food safely to those in need.

Tammy Laney, Food for Preston coordinator, said, “Our Food for Preston Backpack Program continues to serve students in need during these uncertain times. Over 300 students depend upon the Backpack Program for weekend meals and we do not want that to falter now while schools are closed.

“We are packing larger bags of non-perishable food such as soup, rice, vegetables and cereal, all while taking steps to keep volunteers, school staff and students safe by washing hands, wearing gloves and maintaining distance. School counselors and staff have stepped up to safely distribute the bags to Backpack Program students through their established Preston County School Feeding Sites. Keeping our Food for Preston Backpack Program going is important now more than ever and Preston Memorial’s faithful support will help ensure students stay fed, stay hopeful and stay safe,” Laney said.

Monetary donations are still needed to help support the Food for Preston Backpack Program and can be made through its website at or sent to Food for Preston Backpack Program, P.O. Box 1175, Kingwood, WV 26537. For more information, visit the website or contact  Laney at 304-379-3519 or