Arch Coal's Leer Mine employees donate 3,672 food items to food pantries


GRAFTON "Hunger of choice is a painful luxury; hunger of necessity is terrifying torture." ~ Mike Mullin


Arch Coal's Leer Mine Complex employees have been collecting food for the past month. Boxes of pasta; cans of fruits, vegetables and beans; and jars of peanut butter were stacked waist high in the front lobby of the mine main office.


   Employees donated 1,836 food items, and the Leer Mine Complex Community Giving Committee matched the employees' efforts for a total donation of 3,672 food items to be distributed to area organizations that assist those in need. Last Wednesday morning volunteers with Taylor County's Project HOP2E (Helping Our People 2 Eat) arrived at the Leer Mine Complex to receive the 612 food items being donated to their mobile food pantry. Bryan Smith, Project HOP2E Vice-President , was extremely appreciative of the generous gift and shared that the mobile food pantry was scheduled to hold a distribution on Saturday April 18 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Flemington Elementary School. Smith also shared that donations of loaves of bread would be greatly appreciated.


   Project HOP2E will also be planting a vegetable garden this spring, located next to the Grafton Drive-In . All produce grown in the garden will go to those in need. Plantings will include: corn, green beans, peas, carrots, potatoes, squash, melons, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower , celery, cucumbers and herbs. Organizers are seeking volunteers to help with all aspects of the garden. "A little help can go a long way. Your participation will be a blessing to many people," stated Smith.


   For more information, to donate to the mobile feeding program or to volunteer with the vegetable garden, call 304-265-6838 or 304-709-0164 . Please check out our new website at


   Food distribution will continue over the next several days at the Leer Mine Complex with 612 food items being donated to the Grafton unit of the Salvation Army, 612 items to Heart and Hand House, Inc. in Barbour County, and 1,836 items to Food for Preston, supporting all eleven food pantries in Preston County.


   Michelle Mouser, Accountant with Leer Mine and a member of the company's Community Giving Committee, explained that the employees would next be focusing on The American Cancer Society Relay For Life. The ever growing 23-member Relay for Life team comprised of employees, family members and friends are preparing for the walk scheduled for Saturday June 6; a Golf Tournament at Tygart Lake State Park is being scheduled for May 2; and a pulled pork BBQ sandwich sale on May 16.