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By Steve Steiner
Executive Editor 

Non-profits Team Up to Give Out Food Boxes


Last updated 5/7/2020 at 3:25pm

Steve Steiner

Volunteers ready two boxes of food for a family.

United Community Church, 2301 Noralyn Mine Road, Bartow, was one of five locations givng out food boxes throughout parts of the county, in an effort to distribute 10,000 boxes altogether.

"I was contacted by Lighthouse Ministries and asked if we would participate," said Pastor Ron Burks, who added he jumped at the opportunity.

Starting at noon and expected to last until 2 p.m., church members of UCC, along with volunteers with Lighthouse Ministries and One More Child, busied themselves unloading food from a refrigeration truck. UCC was given 500 boxes.

"What we are doing is each family that drives up, we give one box of non-perishables and one box of frozen," said Ken White, with Lighthouse Ministries' special projects. "If there's two families, we give each two boxes."

According to Joy Sellers, a member of the development team of One More Child, she believed the food box distribution drive came about from an initiative of state senator Kelli Stargell, who reached out to One More Child.

"We have a relationship with Farm Share and with churches," Sellers said.

Steve Steiner

Michelle Davis prays along with a family who received food boxes being distributed by United Community Church. Prayer requests were part of the event, part of food for the soul as well as for the body.

(Farm Share was founded in 1991. It distributes free food to families children, seniors and friends individuals in need throughout Florida. It's motto is "No person goes hungry. No food goes to waste.")

But food boxes were not the only things families could get. They also had the opportunity to make prayer requests.

These were being handled by Michelle Davis, a member of the church, and by Jamey Burk, the pastor's wife.

Quite a few people took up the opportunity, said Davis. The procedure was simple. She wrote down their names and then prayed with them.

"We need to let them know we live them, and care for them," said Davis.

If all the boxes of food at UCC don't get distributed, those and the refrigeration truck will remain at the church until at least next week.

"I just got off the phone with Rusty [Music] at the Church Service Center," said Burk. "They will be having a food distribution next Thursday."

Music is the executive director of the Bartow Church Service Center.

Author Bio

Steve Steiner, Executive Editor

Steve came out of a two-year retirement to helm Following a career in journalism/advertising/public relations --- at one point being a partner in an advertising/PR agency --- he shifted professions and focused on food service and hospitality before returning to journalism. As a journalist, rose from reporter to sections editor to managing/executive editor with newspapers in North Carolina, Mississippi and Florida. He is enjoying restoring a quality news site for his adopted hometown. Send him your story ideas.


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