PORTSMOUTH — The Hunters, Mark and Virgie, from the very beginning, started the Steven A. Hunter Hope Fund in honor or their son, to help feed children who may not have enough food to eat. At that time, they had no idea how very important the fund would be especially in the year 2020.
During this time of so many unanswered questions and thoughts of the unknown, the Hunters have been making sure that children are taken care of weekly. There has been a summer feeding program in summer’s past, but this one is quite different. Keep in mind that these children have been home without their cooked school meals since March and many of them are depending on this food to help them and their families get through this time.
Along with that, the Hunters have had to reach out and try to get grants and donations to help them with the cause. Luckily for them, an old friend of Portsmouth, Jason Kester(former Director of SOPA) and his company Agracel, had a grant they give away each year and Kester put the Hunter Hope Fund in, and they were chosen among others submitted.
“Every year they accept nominations from their employees to make a grant to a nonprofit. Jason remembered Steven’s Hope Fund and they chose us to receive the grant!” Mark Hunter said of the honor. “He just drove down this morning and delivered a check in the amount of $10,000! How amazing, especially now.”
Kester is the Regional Development Director for Agracel, the Director for the State of Ohio in their Columbus office. When he was in Portsmouth. he was on the Scioto County Health Coalition and knew the Hunters and knew their mission and kept them in mind. He said, “My company has a charitable giving campaign and took nominations in the spring and my company voted on who we wanted to make donations to and they chose the power packs for the Hunter Hope Fund.”
Kester is a graduate of Minford High School. Kester’s grandmother still lives in Scioto County and Kester says he comes to visit her and being a member of the Minford Fire Department and working with Josh Shoemaker and Minford Basketball, he will stop by and help when he is in this area. “This grant is just trying to help the less fortunate there in our community is a really important thing.”
Kester added, “We annually have a charitable giving campaign with one big winner and some smaller ones for others, and this year, Mr. Hunter’s group was chosen. We have five offices across the country and on a Zoom call, we all agreed to select the Hope Fund. My company especially thought that right now with children not being in school, they might not have access to the right kind of food nutrition and this was as good time as any to support something like that.” Thanks to Agracel, the Steven Hunter Hope Fund received a much-needed boost, even a large company can see the need to help those in need, especially during a trying time.
About Agracel, which donated this grant, according to President and CEO of Agracel Dean Bingham, it is a combination of two words, agriculture and excellence. They build large industrial buildings They are an industrial developer the company that Agracel builds gets the facility that they want and the community gets jobs. Agracel states that the difference is where we choose to develop. The small town market is one that many developers ignore. Not Agracel. As an industrial development company that focuses on developing projects and creating jobs in rural towns, Agracel has created a unique model in the industry.
Reach Kimberly Jenkins (740)353-3101 ext. 1928
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