One in six. That’s the number of people in Southern Michigan that struggle with hunger according to a local food bank. Mark Smith sees the need first hand.
“They tell us that they can’t seem to get enough food if they’ve got a bridge card. There’s not enough areas and not enough money coming into the community to help them out and they’re marginalized problems so that’s an issue for the people in the community,” said President of the Jackson Community Pantry, Mark Smith.
Mark wanted to be part of the solution. And for more than 20 years now the Jackson Pantry has served anybody that needs help. There is no judgement. For Mark, it’s more than just food, it’s about building a sense of community with the person living outside or just around the corner.
“When we are in here we try to treat them absolutely the best we can. If they need a hug we’ll give them a hug. It’s a matter of respecting them on a different level than they have been treated before,” said Smith.
The food is collected and delivered mainly through the South Michigan Food Bank. They are an organization that purchases food at a much lower cost than grocery store prices. To keep the mission alive, they need your help during the holidays and all year round. The best way to help is with a monetary donation.
“That is helpful because at Christmas time and Easter time we get a lot of food. I mean right now we are just overloaded with food which is a wonderful thing. People are very giving but in April and May things slow down a lot so sometimes it’s a little bit more difficult to get the money we need to support this,” said Smith.
If you would like to help out there is a link below.