CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts kicked off its capital campaign Monday, to raise money for a headquarters in Chicopee.

The new facility will be twice the size of the current site in Hatfield. Food insecurity has increased during the pandemic and local leaders believe a new distribution site will help alleviate the problem.

“This new facility is going to allow them to provide even more support to food pantries around the region to do it more efficiently, to get more food to families who need it,” said Senator Eric Lesser of Longmeadow.

So far, the Food Bank has raised about $12 million of their $22 million capital campaign goal.

Moose Lodge in Chicopee has partnered with The Food Bank to distribute the brown bag food for elders program. The construction for The Food Bank’s future home will be built on the corner of Carew and East Main Streets. Construction on the new headquarters, which will be larger and environmentally greener than the current one located in Hatfield, is set to begin next spring.

“We are incredibly grateful to Big Y and the MassMutual Foundation for their long-time support of the Food Bank and their generous commitments to our capital campaign. . .We are confident that they have given us the momentum we need to run a successful campaign and make our new distribution center and headquarters a reality.”

Erica Flores | President of the Food Bank’s Board of Directors

The Food Bank currently partners with over 171 local food pantries, meal sites and shelters to provide food for people facing food insecurity.