Bank of America made its annual donation of $4,500 to the dining room at Friends in Service Helping this week.
“Bank of America is pleased to give a very deserving gift to help the needy, especially the children, in Carson City,” said Michael Sharp, regional market president for the bank.
Jim Peckham, executive director of FISH, said it costs about $125,000 annually to run the kitchen, which serves about 19,000 dinners a year — 45 percent to children.
“Obviously, it’s not just one season,” he said. “It’s ongoing.”
Peckham said 1,704 meals were served in the dining room in June, a record for that month.
“We’re a little anxious,” he said. “We don’t know what that means yet.”
Peckham said although the economy has begun to stabilize, it will take time before some feel any relief.
“The people we provide services to are going to be among the last to join the employment ranks,” Peckham said. “It will take a while.”
The dining room is open from 3-5:30 p.m. every day — except Thanksgiving, when the Carson Nugget offers a free meal. Peckham said it is open to everyone, but diners are encouraged to register to help determine what other services they may need.
In addition to the dining room, FISH offers clothing, showers, laundry, medical services and shelters.
Peckham said the organization used to serve mostly homeless and transient residents but has evolved to serve those trying to stay out of poverty.
“We have a lot of working poor,” he said. “More and more, we’re finding we’re helping people to make ends meet.”
Sharp said the bank will continue to support the organization.
“We will look forward to helping in the future,” he said. “This is some of the most important money we give.”