HERMITAGE, Pa. (WKBN) — The Community Food Warehouse of Mercer County has kicked off Hunger Action Month strong.

Saturday, it announced that Shenango Valley businesses have collected thousands of pounds in food donations. It was one of the largest food drives created by a female-led non-profit in the county.

“The fight is never going to be over, even though our ‘fight’ is over. What we did is just a drop in the bucket of what our community needs,” said Lady Scouts marketing officer Brittany Sammartino.

At the beginning of August, the Lady Scouts challenged the Shenango Valley to help stock the shelves at the local food pantry.

Community Food Warehouse was only stocked at 30% capacity due to the increased need. In the time of need, the Shenango Valley rose to action. Over 60 businesses participated, collecting more than 7,000 pounds of donated items.

It’s a lot of food — 7,000 pounds is about the weight of two cars.

St. Paul’s Senior Living Community from Greenville won the food fight, collecting more than 1,000 pounds of food — the initial total goal of the food drive. St. Paul’s even got inspired by the food fight idea and had their own competition while also competing with other businesses.

“It certainly was a big surprise to us for sure and it made us feel good to know that we were able to donate this much to the food warehouse,” said St. Paul’s IT specialist Erica Gulentz.

Though the food fight has ended, the need is still here in Mercer County.

“Over 13% of our residents are living in food-insecure households and over 20% of our children are coming from food-insecure households. That equates to over 14,000 people right here in Mercer County that need our help,” said Community Warehouse executive director Becky Page.

As part of Hunger Action Month, the community warehouse is calling on everyone to help where they can.

“Hunger never takes a vacation. People can donate online. For every dollar donated to us, we are able to provide three meals to our hungry friends and neighbors here in Mercer County,” Page said.

The Lady Scouts said the food fight will be an annual event.