Great Western Bank in Crete announced Crete Foodnet was its recipient of the Crete branch's one-time Great Gifts of Gratitude program that recognizes the selfless work and dedication of community members who have gone above and beyond during the pandemic.

That donation was one of 140 made throughout nine states with Great Western Bank branches, totaling $70,000.

“I go back to our values,” Great Western Bank President and CEO Mark Borrecco said in a release. “We want to empower locally and think globally, and we want to do the right thing. More so, we want to make sure we are committed to the communities we serve now more than ever.”

Lorene Horky of Crete Foodnet was presented with a gift basket that included items from Hennings Crete Floral and Gifts and Blue River Meats.

Crete Foodnet has been operating at the Crete Community Center since 2003. Horky has served as coordinator there for five years. Horky spoke with City Administrator Tom Ourada about adjustments needed to maintain the operation during the initial weeks of the pandemic. Through the pandemic volunteers began sorting food into boxes for the weekly Saturday drive, all involving nearly a 12-hour time commitment each week. Horky and co-coordinator Elaine Vlasin ensured needy community members received those donations.

Crete Foodnet has been made possible through donations from Peter Clarke with Crete Foodmart, Smithfield Foods, Crete Walmart and several stores in Lincoln. Crete Foodnet serves donations to 60 families weekly.

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