The Free Clinic purchased a 26’ Hino Refrigerated Toyota Truck with the generous support of Bonnie Hechtkopf, the Margaret Ewell Dickins Foundation and Jamie and Jane Egasti. The truck will expand the capacity of food donated to the Free Clinic’s Jared S. Hechtkopf Community Food Bank and distributed back into our community.

The Free Clinic collects food donations from local grocers, farmers and organizational partners like Feeding Tampa Bay then distributes the food to our clients and residential programs, and our network of 65 pantries, shelters, community kitchens and residential programs throughout the community.

In 2018, we collected and distributed a record of 7.6 million pounds of food to our community partners.

But our ability to collect and distribute has been limited by the size of our trucks. The 26-foot refrigerated truck increases the amount of food we pick up from donation partners and decreases the number of trips when we’re distributing food into the community.  

For example, our donation pickups from Feeding Tampa Bay can expand with the larger truck. And we can reduce the number of trips to Pasco County farms by picking up more fresh produce in each trip. The new truck helps us more effectively use staff and volunteer time and allows us to provide even more fresh, healthy foods to our neighbors in need.

Donors like Bonnie Hechtkopf, who provided the initial gift for the truck, make it possible for us to better serve the Pinellas County community. Bonnie also provided funding to purchase the Jared S. Hechtkopf Community Food Bank in 2017.

“We are delighted to support St Pete Free Clinic,” said Jamie and Jane Egasti. “And investing in building the capability to serve the growing needs in our community.