CHEROKEE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) — The Cherokee County Meals on Wheels broke ground on its new $1.4 million facility Tuesday.

“We have been working toward this groundbreaking and building expansion for almost five years now,” said Terry Dennis, the Executive Director of the Cherokee County Meals on Wheels.

The organization moved into its existing building in 1994. Back then, they delivered 165 meals a day.

“Now, we’re at over 400 a day. We have been feeling the pinch. We have had growing pains for a number of years.”

Those growing pains are why Dennis said they decided to build a new facility. It will be attached to the existing building and provided much-needed space.

“We’re going to double our size. It will have a state of the art commercial kitchen, offices, boardroom, training room and double driveway.”

The additional space will allow the organization to prepare and deliver up to 1,000 meals a day.

“It’s such a blessing,” said Dennis. “It’s going to be a kitchen for the community.

“We’re not just delivering meals,” added Ben Lanto, the Vice President of the Cherokee County Meals on Wheels’ Board. “We’re doing wellness checks. We want to be able to hand them to them personally.”

Lanto helped design the new building and has delivered meals for 10 years. He said being part of Meals on Wheels is his “reason for being.”

“You can’t imagine how great it is to see the smiles of all these people when we come to see them,” said Lanto.

Dennis said the building is expected to be completed in eight months to one year.