SERVE announces plan for new facility

SERVE, Inc. announced a planned facilities expansion to increase the amount of services that can be provided to Callaway County.

SERVE has two current facilities -- a main office and food pantry at 4901 County Road 304 and Trends at 1223 South Business 54.

Trends is a resale shop of donated clothing and household items. All proceeds raised from Trends goes to SERVE.

The newly announced facility will be at the intersection of Gaylord Drive and 4th Street, a SERVE release states.

Renovations will be done to the lumberyard buildings located there. Once renovated, the facility will house all of SERVE's services under one roof.

Courtney Harrison, executive director of SERVE, said both buildings currently owned by SERVE will be sold.

"All of our services will be over there [the new facility]," Harrison said. "Trends, transportation, food pantry, administration."

She said the new facility will be helpful to SERVE's clients that need multiple services, as they will all be in the same building.

Harrison added the move will also help with efficiency for staffing and volunteers.

The biggest reason for the move however, is the need for an expansion to SERVE's food pantry.

Harrison said an increase in space would allow them to create a back-stock of donations.

The food pantry currently is a drive-thru service. Harrison said SERVE is looking at transitioning the service into "more of a mercantile shopping experience."

She is also interested in starting an area at the facility for community resources.

"Where maybe different social services or resources for clients might come together once a month," Harrison said. "But instead of expecting our clients to go out to 10 different social service agencies to get assistance, maybe we have a one-stop shop there where they could speak with CARDV or someone from the Housing Authority or CMCA."

To determine what services need to be added or expanded upon, SERVE plans to put together a focus group that will consist of stakeholders in the community.

Harrison said this will allow the organization to "see what is missing, if there is anything missing."

For the move to the new facility, SERVE was awarded funding from several services. The organization received $645,000 from the Department of Economic Development and $158,000 from Callaway County Special Services. SERVE also received matches from CPPS Heritage Mission Fund, Lichtenstein Foundation, Fulton Walmart and Callaway Electric Foundation.

SOA Architecture has provided in-kind support for the new facility.

SERVE further received $350,000 in Missouri NAP tax credits, which were used alongside a $500,000 donation from Mike and Suzie Teel, the sellers of the building.

A "sizable gap" still remains between the grants and gifts compared to the expected expense of renovating the building.

To bridge this gap, SERVE launched a capital campaign.

To support the campaign, checks can be mailed to SERVE, Inc., 4901 County Road 304, Fulton, MO 65251. Checks can also be dropped off at Trends or given to any SERVE Tran driver.

Donations can also be made online at

To designate a donation for the capital campaign, note it on the check's memo or online note box.

Harrison said the renovation process is still in the "very early stages." She said they are meeting with architects and preparing for the process.

She added they hope to be completed by the end of 2024.

"Not a definite, but that's the hope," Harrison said. "A lot of that's going to depend on our capital campaign and the funding. We've got a lot to raise."