BUTLER, Pa. (KDKA) — A large check is now in the hands of a church in Butler County. The donation, coming from one of the biggest chains in the country, was a welcome surprise for some.

Members of the First English Lutheran Church say the money came at the perfect time. They were talking about possibly closing a program that helps so many in the community.

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“Because of the virus, because of our volunteers, because of the risk we all take,” church coordinator Mary Ann Swanson said.

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That’s no longer the case thanks to a $20,000 grant from Walmart.

“We know there are difficult times out there and we wanted to give back in a bigger way,” Angela Fleeger, the marketing manager for North Pittsburgh-area Walmarts, said.

Fleeger says the chain was looking to help out those in need in Butler County, but didn’t know exactly where.

“I got a hold of Sam Zurzolo, who is the vice president of the Butler Township Commissioners and he’s also the community champion for Butler, so he’s kind of the perfect guy,” Fleeger said.

Turns out, Zurzolo told her that 500 or more people a month rely on weekly dinners provided at the First English Lutheran Church on Main Street.

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“It was really nice to give it to them because they sure do appreciate it and they feed a lot of homeless people,” said Zurzolo.

The grant money will more than likely go to help keep that going, but the money will also help neighboring churches that offer free dinners to those struggling.


“Maybe now we can provide something even more special,” said Swanson.

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The $20,000 is just part of the $50,000 that will be given out to various organizations in Butler County.