The Food Bank of East Alabama is consistently making a noticeable difference in the lives of those who find themselves struggling with hunger. Cornerstone has been partnered with the Food Bank for many years now, and we’re always looking to strengthen that relationship because we recognize the impact this organization has in our community. The last two Christmas’, we have collected food during the holiday season to be distributed to homes in our community or to stock the shelves of the Food Bank. During both of these events, we had many conversations about what we could do to take a next step. That is, how could we take a great service event and build some lasting relationships.
Recently, the Food Bank introduced us to a new program called the Food Project of East Alabama: Building Community||Sharing Food. The purpose of the project is to network with your neighbors to collect food to keep the shelves of the Food Bank stocked. Each time you go to the grocery store for the week, you grab one extra item. Every other month, you bring your seven to eight items together with your neighbor and take it to the Food Bank and you start the process over again. It’s easy to see what an impact this could make if neighborhoods all over our community took on this challenge. The big drives that happen throughout the year will continue and help the Food Bank serve more people, but the grassroots movement of the community through the Food Project can remove those fears of ever going through a season where there’s a low intake of food.
As we talk about the Art of Neighboring through the month of June, inviting your neighborhood to take part in the Food Project is a perfect way to break the ice and find out the name of a neighbor and begin moving from strangers to acquaintances. You can do a gathering every other month with your neighbors, grill out, sort food and create some great community while serving the larger community in a tangible way.
If you’d like more information on the Food Project, there will be a Food Project representative at the Next Step tables in the Worship Area on Sunday morning. Or you can e-mail Brian Johnson, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Jonathan Savage, email@example.com.