Poverello House looks for community help in upgrading aging building

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The warehouse at Poverello House has seen better days, and it's been quite some time for it. Rotting wood, a leaking roof and pests pose a challenge for day-to-day operations. (KFSN)

A local nonprofit is in need of a facelift. The Poverello House in Downtown Fresno is asking you to help to raise the roof.

The warehouse at Poverello House has seen better days, and it's been quite some time for it. Rotting wood, a leaking roof, and pests pose a challenge for day-to-day operations.

"You can see the damage to the 2x4's, 4x4's, the sheet rock, the insulation," executive director Cruz Avila said. "Everything you see here from the wood to the concrete."

The lack of insulation means extreme temperatures that could spoil food.

"Nothing ever goes to waste, but, at the end of the day, we can't keep it here on the facility and that's where we lose those blessings," Avila explained. "We can't put it out to our clients as much as we'd like to with all of the proteins, fruits and vegetables that come in on a day-to-day basis."

The current storage is just under 10,000 square feet and houses dry goods furniture and appliances. Frozen items are stored partially in the kitchen's walk-in freezer. The rest are stored off site, but the new 19,000 square foot facility will be all-inclusive.

"That's going to eliminate some of the costs that we have now," Avila explained. "We're providing about anywhere, depending on the month, $700 to $1,500 in cold storage every month."

Add gas and transportation, and it adds up. The new warehouse will be all metal and insulated, featuring on site commercial-grade refrigeration and freezing units, adequate shelving and easy access for the public to donate.

The years of wear and tear are obvious, even on the outside. The new facility doesn't just mean improved food storage the goal is to more than double the 1,600 meals per day they already serve.

The $2.5 million project will also spruce up the east side of campus and include new sheds. Renovations to the village and community of hope will shelter more than 100 clients each night. So far, The Poverello House has raised $1.6 million, and they hope to open October of this year, just in time for the holidays.

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