Local News

Cooper: Girl who founded Grantham food pantry 'embodies spirit of NC'

Posted March 22, 2017 2:42 p.m. EDT
Updated March 22, 2017 6:18 p.m. EDT

— Mackenzie Hinson is only 12 years old, but for twoyears she has served as the founder and director of Make A Difference Food Pantry in Grantham. Gov. Roy Cooper visited the food pantry Wednesday after being wowed by Hinson’s heart and drive.

Hinson started the pantry when she was only 10 years old. Food is donate from the Food Bank in Raleigh, Food Lion, farmers and individual families.

“I have learned that I am the voice for the people who don’t have a voice in the battle of hunger,” she said. “And I’m trying to get a bill passed on the senate floor, so that every child in North Carolina gets a free breakfast. And I hope I can help.”

After Hurricane Matthew, Hinson kept her pantry open for 42 days straight, serving thousands of hot meals.

The governor was wowed enough to invite Hinson to his State of the State address.

“We made sure we recognized Mackenzie in the State of the State address,” Cooper said. “She, I think, embodies the spirit of North Carolina and people being able to bounce back from tragedy.”

Hinson said she hopes the pantry will expand to meet her grand vision.

“This will become a warehouse I hope,” Hinson said. “I want to buy the whole strip mall.”