Numbers down a little at Harvest of Hope Food Pantry

Published 3:08 pm Wednesday, May 10, 2017

It is hard to believe that a quarter of 2017 has already passed and that… Easter Sunday [passed as well recently]. Harvest of Hope Food Pantry is a faith ministry and we pray that [on that] Sunday (and every Sunday) each of you [celebrated] the resurrection of the One who makes this ministry possible.
During the first quarter of 2017, our number of clients has been down, but not significantly. It has been suggested that the reason might be that people have money as a result of income tax refunds. We have noticed in past years that our numbers have been down in the early part of the year, but those numbers grow as the months pass. Hopefully, we pray that it might be the case. Perhaps some of our clients have been blessed and no longer need our help. We know that there is one family that has received food in the past, who has been blessed so that they are able to donate food to the food pantry for the last few months. What a blessing!
We were blessed that during the recent storms we did not have any structural damage. We did have a freezer go out. I checked the building only to discover that the temperature in one freezer was rising. It became necessary for the meat in it to be moved to our new larger freezer. I was blessed with help from Nash Chantal and David Hawkins who answered my call for help immediately and worked for over an hour to move the food from the small freezer to the large freezer. I owe them a BIG Thanks.
Needed: Volunteers. We have the best volunteers who are dedicated to the work of Harvest of Hope Food Pantry. However, we NEED some additional volunteers. Several of our faithful volunteers have found jobs and several of them have returned to school to prepare for a needed job. T.L. Phillips, who worked faithfully for the time he was in Americus, recently moved to Mexico, indicating that he and a friend were going to open a bed and breakfast there. We wish them all success in their new endeavors. But we need volunteers to take their places.
Also Needed: Financial Support. We normally acquire a good portion of our food items from the Second Harvest of South Georgia warehouse in Albany. Their supply of USDA items has been very slack in the last few months. We have obtained mainly spinach, instant potatoes, and carrots over the last several months. We watch the inventory almost daily and it has been a while since they have had corn, green beans and peas. To be able to provide a variety of foods, we have purchased food from our local Food Lion store.
We have several churches that have put us in their annual budget and send us a check every month. THANK YOU. If you are not doing this, would you please consider it? We have individuals who give monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or even annually through our Friends of the Pantry program. THANK YOU. One person told us that when he realized that he spent about $30 per month on dog food he decided that he could spend $30 per month to help someone who was hungry.
Whether you are an individual, church, organization, or business, we appreciate every donation. If you are not giving on a regular basis, pray that God will show you how he wants you to assist Harvest of Hope. Just remember: no amount is too small and no amount is too large. We want you to be a part of Harvest of Hope Food Pantry. We want to be your hands in this community.
We have been giving food only to residents of Sumter County because the people of Sumter County are the ones that support the food pantry. When the USDA representative from Atlanta visited us recently, he reinforced this decision.
If you have visited Food Lion lately and missed seeing Michael Waters, he has retired. We will miss him because he is a friend and a friend of the food pantry. He has assured me that Food lion is going to continue its relationship with Harvest of Hope. I do not think a new manager has been appointed yet for this store. Food Lion has been a blessing to Harvest of Hope Food Pantry.
A special thanks to all of our volunteers and donors both of money and food.
God bless.

Sonny Pinckard is the executive director of the Harvest of Hope Food Pantry in Americus.