Almost a decade ago now, some individuals came together and acknowledged the need to assist food-insecure families in our community. In the beginning, the “food pantry” was a six-shelf …
Almost a decade ago now, some individuals came together and acknowledged the need to assist food-insecure families in our community. In the beginning, the “food pantry” was a six-shelf wall unit stocked with canned goods available to individuals who reached out. Quickly, though, God opened doors and granted new opportunities to serve the members of our community.
Walmart Neighborhood Market established itself in Belmont in December of 2014 and was searching for a local pantry to which it could donate food. After reaching out, the food pantry began receiving donations from Walmart, which enabled the volunteers to establish monthly giveaways. Receiving donations from Walmart also enabled the food pantry to connect with MidSouth Food Bank, a partner of the Feeding America program. This partnership would allow the food pantry to purchase food to give away.
When Walmart Neighborhood Market announced its closure in 2016, the future of the food pantry was uncertain, but God provided. The next step made available was through the Mississippi Food Network in Jackson. The food pantry was able to start receiving USDA food at no cost in August 2016.
Soon, the food pantry outgrew the Sunday School room, and the search was on for a larger facility. Although it seemed an obstacle at the time, it was obvious that the food pantry’s mission was effective, and more families would come to receive assistance as a result of expansion.
In January of 2017, the food pantry acquired the old Dowdle Gas building in Belmont, which had been sitting vacant for approximately 5 years and needed major renovations before it would be ideal to operate as a food pantry. Within just a few weeks, some local individuals who had previously served on mission teams for various projects volunteered to come work in the building and had the job completed in just a month. When the monthly giveaways began at the new location, others in the community began joining to help unload the food trucks and stock shelves.
The food pantry was presented with another opportunity to expand its mission with a Mobile Pantry in March of 2020. MidSouth Food Bank would send a truck the morning of with 10-11 pallets of food to giveaway. Food would be unloaded for volunteers to place directly in the cars of recipients. The food pantry reached out to Calvary Baptist Church and asked permission to hold the Mobile Pantry in the parking lot and was not only granted permission but also provided many volunteers ready to work! Mobile Pantry distributions have taken place at Calvary ever since.
The Lord has been abundantly faithful to South Tishomingo County Food Pantry and continues to make a way, even when it seems that there’s not one possible. The ministry was established with the goal of serving as the hands and feet of Christ, but all volunteers agree that they are the ones receiving blessings through the relationships built with members of the community. All the glory goes to God for continually providing and furnishing the food to make the ministry possible. The food pantry was able to serve over 250 families in need last month.
If you are in need of services or would like to volunteer, please contact the South Tishomingo County Food Pantry via their firstname.lastname@example.org or through Facebook messenger on their Facebook page South Tishomingo County Food Pantry.
Requirements for each pantry:
•Must have a 38873, 38838, 38827 or 38847 zip code.
•Photo ID and proof of Tishomingo County residency.
• Upon arrival have vehicle prepared to place food in the trunk or rear of vehicle.
•No walk-ups, only vehicle traffic.
•No more than 2 households per car.