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Virginia small businesses find creative ways to support food pantry

Virginia small businesses find creative ways to support food pantry
Posted at 11:28 AM, Apr 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-30 11:28:38-04

COLONIAL HEIGHTS, Va. -- In the midst of COVID-19 uncertainty, some Virginia small businesses are finding new ways to help each other out while giving back to their communities.

In Central Virginia, the Colonial Heights food pantry is feeling the love.

Inside the food pantry, volunteers keep everything very organized.

A few miles away, HVAC Specialists at Incredible HVAC are working through the pandemic.

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Shop owner Michael Vanwyck has continued to pay his employees for their 40 hours work weeks, though there wasn't that much work for them to do.

"We got to a point we cleaned up the shop and did everything there we could," Vanwyck said. "I care about my people and my goal was to make sure everybody could still pay their bills and show them that i'm there for them".

Vanwyck's plan to keep his employees on the payroll also includes helping out the Colonial Heights Food Pantry.

"So for every $89.99 in preventative maintenance that we do, we donate $45 dollars of it to the Colonial Heights Food Pantry," said Vanwyck.

Colonial Heights Food Pantry Executive Director Warren Hammonds explains said that the money goes a long way.

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"So for every $45 you are giving us, you're giving us the buying power to buy produce at Feed More," Hammonds said. "His 45 dollars per customer is gonna result in over 100 meals for our families here".

The donations come at a challenging time for the Food Pantry, Hammond said, explaining that donations are down.

But Michael Vanwyck isn't the only one supporting the Food Pantry with a unique idea.

Lisa Kochuba of Over The Top Flower Shop is also giving back through selling mothers day bouquets.

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Lisa and her daughter Katie usually handle flowers for weddings, but with the pandemic canceling ceremonies, they've had to pivot to so Mother's Day bouquets.

"All the proceeds will be going directly to the Food Pantry," Kochuba explained.

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