CRYSTAL LAKE – What started as a modest company food drive turned into a 2,000 pound collection by one Crystal Lake company.
Gallant Building Solutions delivered 2,392 pounds of food to the Crystal Lake Food Pantry Wednesday, a number employees never imagined they could reach. The original goal was to reach 1,000 pounds.
“It was insane what came in,” said Gallant Project Accountant Allison Ruckoldt, who played a large part in encouraging employees to take part in the two-week food drive. “It became clear [Monday] that we made [our goal]. And we way made it. Killed it.”
Along with the 2,000 pounds of nonperishable food, Gallant employees collected $1,000 that will go to the Crystal Lake Food Pantry. Gallant President Kevin Krak said he would match whatever the company collected, and added an additional $2,392 that went to the food pantry.
The cash donations help “round out the plate,” said Gallant Account Manager Ali Helland. “They might have the green beans and the rice, but might not have the meat. So they'll use the cash to get those type of items.”
Helland said that the food drive was both an opportunity to help the community and a chance to bring employees closer together.
“I think it was a morale builder,” she said. “People wanted to do something that they weren't going to get individual prizes for. It was just something good for the community, and that felt really good. A lot of people go without food right here in our backyard.”
“It definitely brought people together, Ruckoldt said. “It was something outside of work that was almost like a stress reliever.”
Gallant Building Solutions is a construction company based in Crystal Lake with clients all across North America.
The Crystal Lake Food Pantry is governed by local Christian churches and collects food supplies for Crystal Lake individuals and families in need.