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NEW FACILITY: Meals From The Heartland Permanent Home

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Meals from the Heartland will soon have a new permanent home.

Business leader Bill Knapp donated nearly 3 acres of land in West Des Moines to build the organization a new headquarters.  They unveiled plans for the $1.9 million facility on Thursday.

The land is located at 357 Lincoln Street, which is south of Valley Junction and West of 63rd Street.

A celebratory groundbreaking will be held June 10.

Since 2008, more than 100,000 volunteers have donated their time, energy and funding to prepare meals for hungry people locally and around the world.

About 840 Principal Financial employees contributed to the cause Thursday.

It was a mobile meal packing event, where all the food and equipment was brought directly to the workers on the Principal campus.

Officials say that makes it easier to get volunteers in during short windows, like their lunch hour.

The volunteers packaged special mac and cheese meals which will stay here in the local community.

“In the past these meals have gone out all over the country, gone to third world countries this year they’re staying right here in Iowa, mac and cheese for hungry people right here in our home state,” volunteer Mary O’Keefe said.

The workers packed over 100,000 meals which will be distributed through the Food Bank of Iowa.