Local News

Free market feeds needy in Edgecombe County

Posted July 23, 2014
Updated July 24, 2014

— In a small community of the east side of Edgecombe County and on the edge of desperation, the monthly delivery from the  Inter-Faith Food Shuttle is a welcome sight.

On the fourth Wednesday of every month, food shuttle volunteers at a Mobile Food Market sort, sack and send food home with people who may otherwise go hungry.

"There's a need in the community and we're trying to supply that need," said Clarence Givens. "We help somebody to help somebody else. It's like a chain reaction."

The need for easy access to affordable, healthy food is not unique to Princeville, and the volunteers are aware of the part they play. Inter-Faith Food Shuttle Where can I get food?

"It's global, but I will do what I can to reach as many as I can," said Doris Sessoms, food coordinator for the Mobile Food Market.

"I don't think we can end hunger, but we can help hunger along the way," Givens added. "I don't think we can end it, but we can at least try to put a dent in it."

The free food market serves young, old, black, white. 

Renea Pittman is a single mother and shops the market to feed her family.

"Food is so expensive, it's been helping me out a lot," she said.

"They will eat better, you know, with the variety of fruits and vegetables."

Six hours before the free market opened, a 76-year-old man stood in line. That farmer, who said an economic setback brought him to the market, was too proud to give his name.

"It's a blessing," Pittman said. "It's going to help a whole lot of people out."

Wednesday's Mobile Food Market served more than 250 families, or about 600 people, Sessoms said.

Inter-Faith Food Shuttle programs serve seven counties in central North Carolina: Wake, Durham, Orange, Chatham, Johnston, Nash and Edgecombe.


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  • radkins Jul 25, 2014

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    If you would like to pay her 35-40k for that SUV, I'm sure she would be willing to take it. What do YOU know about that car? What condition is it in? was it donated to her? A hand-me-down, perhaps? Maybe she bought it at action and fixed it herself. You may have a point, but then again, you may be wrong, so very wrong.

  • mst101406 Jul 24, 2014

    If you have never experienced hunger, please don't comment with negativity. This is a very real need in our entire nation right now. I for one am thankful that someone is giving back to the community. Nutrition is essential to a healthy life young or adult. If someone gets it and doesn't appear to need it, how do you know if they need it? You don't. Unless your in that line, worry about yourself. And be thankful that someone out there tonight isn't going hungry. Focus on the positive people.

  • Tommie Chavis Jul 24, 2014
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    Then your company is at fault for not advising them it is for "CUSTOMERS" only. You find it ok to label them as freeloaders when in fact they were not since you or a company rep did not advise them they could not participate in a "CUSTOMER APPRECIATION"... Then I would prob not shop at your company. Who cares if they did not shop there. They can be potential future customers. I get the same kind at our appreciation events and invite regardless. Talk about tolerance...

  • Confucius say Jul 24, 2014

    It doesn't matter how much the recipients get in government assistance, they will jump at every chance to get something for free. A company I used to work for did an annual customer appreciation day for CUSTOMERS. We set up in the parking lot and cooked hot dogs and side items. A whole family from across the street comes over with about 5 kids and they all load up as many plates as they can carry and go back home. They were not even customers, just someone looking to get something for free.

  • iopsyc Jul 24, 2014

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    When I was growing up our family had a small garden, but that was the exception not the rule in our suburbs.

    I would imagine that municipal and/or HOA restrictions have had an impact, but you're right it's a rare sight these days.

  • Joseph Smith Jul 24, 2014
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    Someone explain this to me. When I was a child it seemed everyone had a garden. If you did not have one someone in your family did. After work people used to tend their garden. You hardly ever see vegetable gardens anymore. Why??

  • Jerry Sawyer Jul 24, 2014
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    The state should spend a billion dollars to build wonderful facilities to feed, house, love and educate all the hungry kids who's parents won't do what it takes to feed their kids. Letting kids go hungry IS child abuse. The parents should be held accountable. Yes, there are a very few parents who are truly not able to work. And most often, this is due to the personal choices they made. And yes, there are a very few people we really do need to help.

  • Wheelman Jul 24, 2014

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    I noticed this also. While I believe there are truly needy persons, there is one thing I don't quite understand and have never seen or heard a real explanation. We have a taxpayer funded food assistance program commonly referred to as food stamps. I went to the NC DSS website looked up the benefits allowed. For a family of 4 it is up to $625 per month. A family of 6 is up to $900 a month. I know food costs more now. But, we are a family of 6 and we didn't spend $900 a month on food and we had plenty of meat, fresh veggies and fruit. It makes it difficult for me to understand how so many of these families are "going hungry". What are they spending these food stamp benefits on? I think a lot of other people who are sympathetic to the needy have this same question. I'm not trying to criticize anyone's efforts or program, but I would certainly like a better understanding.

  • SouthernBornSouthernBred Jul 24, 2014

    Again another free handout! I think if you are on food stamps and living in public housing you should be given bags of seeds to plant in a community garden for all in the housing unit to share. Maybe if they had to grow their food they would appreciate it more. It's sad those that really need it feel bad about having to get it and those dead beats take everything they can! The Welfare system needs to change!

  • Mike Berthold Jul 24, 2014
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    Might want to look up the prices again. You're an order of magnitude too high. That model runs in the $5-8k range for that year. If you pay $35-40k for a 12-17 year old Infinity QX4, I can understand why you're ticked off at those getting assistance.