Food donation and volunteer effort in Wayne County helps more than 3,500 families facing food insecurity
The lingering impact of the COVID-19 pandemic means even deeper food insecurity, especially for many rural families. A Wayne County nonprofit is helping to fill that need.Posted — Updated
Early every Monday morning, behind the Maxwell Regional Agricultural and Convention Center near Goldsboro, hundreds of cars line up to fill up with boxes of fresh produce.
Even after three hours of waiting, Mildred Blizzard had only praise for the system. She said,"It’s just wonderful. It just melts my heart that they can do this for us."
Gregory Quick, director of the Three-in-One Family Center, says they began the weekly operation two months ago. He said the word is getting out. "There were other people that came through the line that said they were just becoming aware of it," he said.
"The need here in Wayne County is intense," said Rep. Raymond Smith (NC-21). "We have the greatest needs across the state of North Carolina."
That was part of Patrick Hall’s motivation. He said, "This is my second time and it means a lot. I use it for my family and a few other ones that needs it that lives right by me."
Blizzard brings a lot of the food she receives to her elderly friends who have difficulty venturing out. "And the shut-ins really, really appreciate it," she said.
Quick and his wife, Cassandra, say their nonprofit reaches about 20% of Wayne County families in need. "And we would love to see those numbers get even higher," said Quick. The goal is that no family should go hungry.
That’s what it means for another person in line for the free food. Esther Jones said simply, "It means a lot. I can feed my family."
Gregory Quick’s efforts to fight hunger extend into helping supply food for kids’ summer meals sites. Other regular feeding projects help Hispanic families in the Wayne County Town of Dudley and even serving sites in Sampson County.
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