The food pantry has had a number of locations throughout its history. In the early nineties, it was located in city hall. The food pantry has also been housed at the water treatment plant and the Covenant Baptist Church garage. The numbers of needy grew and space became very tight. It was at this point that the governing board, the Inter- Church Council, decided that something had to be done to obtain a better location and extend services beyond just food. The Inter- Church Council turned over the operations to a new organization called Marengo area OutReach Enterprises, Inc. It was organized in June of 2000, and this board of community members set about looking for just the right place. They were determined to raise money for whatever the answer would be. While the search was on, the food pantry moved to the old J & L Gas Station on West Grant Highway, which was owned by the city. It was extremely small and food had to be stored off-site. The board determined there was no existing property that would be suitable for our purposes. So, the land on Greenlee Street was purchased, and the building campaign began.
Because of the commitment of this group of people and the generous support of the community, the M.O.R.E. Center opened in August of 2007, and services have expanded to financial assistance, clothing, and household items. This property is valued at more than $400,000. With donated materials, labor, and cash, we moved in owing only $65,000, and this has been reduced to $12,000 in less than four years. We do this with fundraisers. Our next fundraiser is the Fay’s Bar-B-Q and Raffle scheduled for Friday, July 8. For more information, call Sandy Butenschoen at 815- 382-1815.
MORE is located at 829 Greenlee Street in Marengo, and is open from 9a.m.-Noon on Wednesdays, and from 4p.m.-6p.m. on Thursdays. For more information, call 815- 568-7950, or visit www.marengomorecenter.org.