The response to the Henderson Interchurch Ministry’s plea for donations has been overwhelming.
According to HIM officials, over 600 individuals, which equates to about 275 regular families and Thanksgiving boxes, have been served. The shelves are still brimming with food and more donations are coming through the door.
There was a crew of four individuals, a husband-wife and two young men, packing requests and sorting incoming food just as fast as they could move.
“This year it has been real good. It started off kind of slow but then, all the churches, the police and the chamber of commerce put the word out,” said volunteer Robert Wright. “These shelves, like last month, were bare. We get stuff in and as soon as it came in it went out.”
“The word got out and I saw it several times in the paper and it mentioned where you could drop it off,” he said.
Wright and his wife Linda worked like a well-oiled machine – one taking products off the shelves and the other packing the boxes.
“Well, there’s a lot of people out there that we never see and never think about who needs to be fed,” Linda Wright said. “We need to help them. And they are people who can’t help themselves mostly. Or whose circumstances who have diminished somewhat even if temporarily.”
The emotional levels involved in this range vastly.
“It’s our job to help them, we don’t distinguish we just say yes,” she said. “The community has been the best since I’ve been here three years. “The community has overwhelmingly responded and we thank everybody. The fire department delivered. The school children have done drives everywhere, the police dept., the sheriff’s dept., everybody in the community pitched in and that’s the way life should be.”
“It makes me realize how blessed I am, and my husband too. It also lets me remember what’s real. You know you can have all the money in the world and it doesn’t mean a thing if your belly is empty,” she said.
Rounding out the Monday crew were two young men, a local high school student and a junior college student.
Jalen Harris, 17, had the week off from school, but chose to work Monday at the food bank.
“I just wanted to help out the community,” he said. “I usually go to Al’s food bank but they were closed today so I came over here.”
“When I was little, we didn’t really have food and stuff. Now that we do, it’s nice to come and help people that don’t have food themselves,” he said.
“I grew up not having a lot of food and stuff so this is good helping out the community,” Harris said.
Tray Jackson, 21, has been taking classes at an area junior college and works nights. It was shortly before lunchtime and he was sorting and marking food like it was his regular 9-to-5 job.
“I’m just doing this to give back to the people,” he said. “I’ve been doing this a while now. Like my third or fourth time doing this.”
“I like to see the people smile when I take their stuff to the cars. It makes their day, makes my day,” he said.
“At Thanksgiving, I know some families are less fortunate, people go through things and they are not able to afford it. But you know, this makes their day. Blessing a family to eat food and be happy and spread love,” he said.
The HIM facility is located at 769 Hwy. 64 west. For more information, call 903-657-1595.