Holiday food pantry drive is now underway

Published 9:58 pm Thursday, November 23, 2017

For 14 years, the Bank of Brookhaven and The Daily Leader have worked together to help feed the hungry of Lincoln County.

The annual Holiday Food Pantry Drive is underway once again and organizers hope to raise more than $10,000. The collected funds will be divided between five area churches and organizations who provide food for those in need — St. Francis of Assisi/St. Vincent de Paul, Union Hall Baptist Church, St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, the Greater Hope Foundation and Bethel AME.

The promotion always kicks off the day after Thanksgiving, when giving is fresh on everyone’s minds.

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“Our community is great at caring for people,” said Shannon Aker, president of Bank of Brookhaven. “We’re one of the poorest states in the country, but one of the most giving.”

Aker is proud to be part of the Holiday Food Pantry Drive.

“It’s about helping people and that’s what I love about it,” he said.

Aker said all charitable organizations have learned to do more with less. They all appreciate this extra help provided by the community at the time of year when the requests are more plentiful than the funding.

Aker said food pantries get hit hard this time of year and the Holiday Food Pantry Drive fills that need. But it wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of the community.

“People are really good about giving to it,” he said.

Several donations come from repeat contributors who tell Aker they give because it’s the right thing to do. He appreciates their willingness to give to the annual drive.

“You’re helping a lot of people you’ll never know or see or even know that you helped,” he said.

Donors have the option of donating in honor or memory of someone, anonymously, as a business or as an individual. The contributors’ names — unless requesting anonymity — and gift are publicized in the newspaper as they come in. A grand total of donations will be printed in each issue. The food pantry drive will end Dec. 15.

“We are grateful for the support of Bank of Brookhaven and the entire community,” Daily Leader Publisher Luke Horton said. “These funds help local groups meet the needs of local people.”

Donations will be accepted at both The Daily Leader and Bank of Brookhaven. Checks can be made out to Holiday Food Pantry. Donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602. They’ll also be accepted at the newspaper office front desk. Donations to the Holiday Food Pantry will be published in The Daily Leader as they come in.

Contributions to the Holiday Food Pantry also can be mailed to the bank, given to bank cashiers or donated through the drive-through windows.