East side grocery store fundraising to pay for needed repairs

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (April 14, 2016) -- Pogue's Run Grocer, a Super Bowl Legacy project, is crumbling. Now management there has started a GoFundMe campaign to help raise money for the costly repairs.

“When it rains, our roof leaks into our store and to repair that is very costly,” said General Manager Alan Walker.

Structural issues are piling up too.

Walker says normally, a business might charge customers more to cover some of those costs, but he’s trying not to do that at the food co-operative.

“We shop and shop and shop for the best price for the best product,” said Walker. “It’s really not in anyone’s best interest to raise prices, so if we can avoid that at all, we definitely want to do that.”

That’s because much of Indianapolis’ east side, where the store is located, is considered a food desert. The east side already has very few options for fresh, healthy food.

In March, Congressman Andre Carson and Mayor Joe Hogsett announced a new push for more funding for grocery stores in areas of Indianapolis. But it may not come in time for the fixes Pogue’s Run needs now.

One shopper and member of the co-op says it could be devastating if the community doesn't pitch in, because the store is so valuable to the neighborhood.

“They’re providing options for people who need to buy food instead of going to the gas station to buy food,” said Denise Conrady.

To fix all the problems, Pogue’s Run needs to raise $80,000. After almost three weeks though, the campaign has only reached $1,095.

If they don’t reach their goal, Walker says they’ll only be able to fix the most critical issues. More importantly, they will have to cut back on how they support the community.

“We try to sponsor different events when we can,” said Walker. “We often provide free soup and other items that we can to try and support our community and let them know that we’re here for them.”

Now he hopes the store’s neighbors will be there for them too.

To donate to the Pogue’s Run fundraising effort, click here.

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