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As hunting season approached, I started thinking about the need for food here at the food pantry,” said Gene Fahey, an avid hunter, and member of the local American Legion Post.
He took it upon himself to speak to Lisa Boswell, Director of Bowling Park and Kathy Powers, who is in charge of the food pantry at the park, to see if he could donate deer meat for those in need.
“She explained to me that it had to be processed and that it had to be processed by a USDA butcher,” said Fahey.
It wasn’t long after that while Fahey was having his own deer processed at Showalter’s Country Meats near Russell Springs that the owners there told Gene about a wonderful program: Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry.
Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry is a charitable volunteer run organization comprised of responsible hunters and conservationist who encourage hunters to harvest and donate deer each season. KHFH is a statewide hunger relief program dedicated to providing a healthy source of protein to needy Kentuckians.
“Our mission is to alleviate hunger and malnutrition in Kentucky by paying for the processing and distributing donated venison to those in need, to provide an outlet for hunters to help their communities and promote environmental stewardship through wildlife management,” said a spokesman for the organization.
This is the way it works: if a hunter kills a deer and cannot use the meat themselves, but would like to donate the meat, Kentucky hunters for the hungry will pay for the processing. Thanks to the generosity of the local American Legion in Metcalfe County who helps facilitate that process.
After learning about the program, Fahey and Bill Lagermann, friends and American Legion comrades started discussing ways to get the local American Legion Post involved.
“I’ve been hunting my whole life and raised my kids hunting and fishing. Kathy has been hunting since we met about 8 years ago,” Fahey said.
Lagermann, too, has been an avid hunter for many years and has made hunting into a family tradition.
“Bill has been hunting since he was about 20, so over 50 years. His brother-in-law got him started. The boys have hunted since they were preteens, and the grandkids, Peter and his brother, John Thomas, and Rachel just started this year,” said Bill’s wife, Chris.
Considering Fahey and Lagermann’s passion for hunting, coupled with the fact that American Legion is a philanthropic, community oriented organization, hunting for local hungry seemed like a perfect fit.
They decided to not only donate meat to be processed but to also donate money to Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry.
Once the meat is processed, they are taking it to the Bowling Park food bank, which serves countless people in the community who are in need.
Although Showalter’s is one of the USDA approved processors for the program, there are many throughout the area.
Learn more about Kentucky hunters for the hungry, you can visit their website at Kyhuntersforthehungry.info
With muzzleloader season underway and bow season still happening, there are still plenty of opportunities to donate a deer to the program. If you are interested in participating call Gene at 270-427-7775 or Kathy at 270-427-8872.