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Wednesday
Feb022011

Community Service

Food Pantry/Grocery Delivery

10 Interesting Facts

1.  FIA and church members help the Deacons identify persons/families that are not food secure

2.  We service persons with a valid Niles driver's license or ID (photocopies taken)

3.  We have two programs: 3rd Sunday Deliveries (monthly) & Mon./Wed. Pick-Up (quarterly)

4.  When participants are assigned to a program, they tell us their household size and identify special dietary needs

5.  3rd Sunday - 30 bags of groceries are delivered

6.  Mon./Wed. Pick-Up – Persons call the office every 3 months to schedule an afternoon pick-up 

7.  Up to 4 curbside pick-ups are scheduled every Monday and Wednesday, serving 20+ per month

8.  Help is needed, and you do not need to be a Deacon. 

2nd Monday – Packing 30 Bags at the Community Ministry Team's monthly meeting

3rd Sunday - 20 Sunday morning volunteers are needed to deliver bags of groceries

Monday/Wednesday Curbside Pick-Ups - 8 afternoon volunteers are needed each month

9. Food/items are donated by the congregation, local businesses and the Post Office Food Drive

10.  When donating food, please consider healthy foods that are lower in sugar, fat, and salt, and those that contain whole grains or protein.  Our Pantry ALWAYS needs:

Oatmeal and cold cereals

Shelf stable Milk

Soup/chili/beef stew and crackers

“Hamburger Helper” - Also tuna or chicken

Canned tuna/chicken/salmon

Pasta and Sauce

Canned fruit, including applesauce and 100% juice

Brown paper and plastic bags

 

Backpacks and school supplies

Deacons buy and stock backpacks stuffed with various school supplies and distributed to local elementary and middle schools. They are then disseminated to those youth who otherwise would not be able to provide their own school supplies

Hat and mitten tree

Every Christmas a tree in the parlor is decorated with paper mittens. Congregants can take paper mitten and replace it on the tree with either a pair of gloves or mittens, or a winter hat. These are donated to the Berrien County Juvenile Center.

Snack Packs

Snack packs consisting of popcorn, granola bars, candy, fruit, and a drink are sent to the Berrien County Juvenile Center. Our youth help decorate the bags.

Thanksgiving baskets

Thanksgiving — that one word conjures up your favorite holiday smells and tastes, traditions with family and friends, parades and football on TV.  We take a long weekend off from work and school to give thanks for all we have, and the ones we love.   It's also a season when we remember that not everyone has enough to eat, and give generously to our Deacon's Food Pantry.  Millions of Americans are not food secure, so our church prepares holiday bags for 30+ families in our community.  Please help out by donating any of these delicious items:

Turkeys and Refrigerated Foods – Monetary Donations (specify Deacon's Food Pantry) 

Dressing, such as Stove Top Stuffing

Instant potatoes and mixes

Gravy

Cream of Soups, such as mushroom

Green Beans

Pumpkin

Yams

Cranberry Sauce

Baking Mixes – Cake, brownie, cookie, etc.

Shelf Stable Milk (including dry, evaporated, condensed)

Brown Sugar

Canola and Olive Oil

 

Christmas presents

The congregation fulfills Christmas wishes for a set of families, most of whom have children with special needs. Clothes, winter coats, and toys have brought joy to many children.

Military goodie packages

From donations from the congregation, goodie boxes consisting of non-perishable snacks and personal items are mailed to military personnel serving overseas. Other packages are assembled for local Veterans in Niles.

New mother gifts

Personal items and small gifts are donated and given to local hospitals for new mothers who need a little extra assistance.

Blood drive

Each year, the Deacons organize and host a Red Cross Blood Drive. The blood collected serves local hospitals and clinics.

Life Lines

The Deacons provide Lifeline medical alert subscriptions to disabled people who need a way to make emergency contacts.