Local beef farmers helping feed families in need

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The lunch rush at the St. Vincent de Paul Family Kitchen in Johnstown is crunch-time for volunteers. Each day, the kitchen feeds about 150-175 people.

Bill Intihar started volunteering at the kitchen six years ago.

“We get the same people that come here everyday. They depend on us,” Intihar said.

Intihar said the meals wouldn’t be possible without donations.

“We always implement all that food into our meals,” said Intihar. “We depend on that. We just can’t do it alone.”

Monday, the Pennsylvania Beef Council and Conzatti’s Italian Market in Johnstown donated $1,000 to the kitchen. May is Beef Month in Pennsylvania and the group wants to encourage families to eat the protein-packed food that supports 12,000 local beef producers across the state.

They also want to give back to those in need.

“It’s sad we have this problem in town,” said Chuck Conzatti, who owns the market.

Over the past ten years, Conzatti has donated about 20-30 pounds of leftover prepared food to the family kitchen each week.

“I’m fortunate to have the things that I need and want, but there’s a lot of people who don’t have money for rent, food or both. So it’s nice that they can at least get some food and get a meal so they can survive,” Conzatti said.

Families come to the kitchen for more than a hot meal. Shirley Sisitka is 80-years-old and lost her husband. She comes for the company.

“I thought I better get out of the house,” said Shirley Sisitka. “Good food, nice people, stuff like that.”

Intihar said the families appreciate getting a hot meal and he’s happy to serve them.

“Give back what we can and make sure that everybody who needs a meal, gets a meal. That’s what it’s all about here,” Intihar said.

If you’d like to donate or volunteer, you can contact the St. Vincent de Paul Family Kitchens:

  • by visiting the Johnstown kitchen, located at 231 Bedford St. Johnstown, PA 15901. You can also call ​814-539-7811.
  • or the Altoona kitchen, located at  2201 Union Ave. Altoona, PA 16602 by calling 814-944-6302

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