Prodisee Pantry is changing lives

I have known Deann Servos, the Executive Director of the Prodisee Pantry, for a number of years. I used to do some work at the Spanish Fort United Methodist Church where the Prodisee Pantry got its start. She has been fervent in her mission of helping local families that are in need. The Prodisee Pantry was instrumental in helping folks during Hurricanes Katrina and Ivan. And steadily over the years I have seen them grow in their ministry and reach. This multi-denominationally supported community ministry is now the largest nonprofit emergency food pantry in the 24 county coastal region encompassing Alabama, Mississippi and Northwest Florida!

On Tuesdays, when I head in to Blue Fish HQ, I drive by and see the line of folks that they are helping... it is moving because there are so many. 

I asked Deann if she had any stats on the ministry and this is what she sent:

In 2013, volunteers distributed 395 tons of food to needy families in Baldwin County including fresh produce, frozen meats, eggs, bread & staple items.  Over 65 tons of produce have been sorted and distributed. We give about 6 different kind of fresh fruits and vegetables each week... Over 330 tons of canned and boxed food items have moved through this facility. 330 tons folks! Our volunteers serve 1,000 families on average each month! In November of 2013, 1,481 families received special holiday food!  1,041 families were served in December for Christmas.  

This past year, there have been 11,712 family visits to Prodisee Pantry. We've calculated that that represents 28,493 individuals. 8,571 were children who had nutritious foods to eat. 6,100 were senior citizens who didn't have to choose between filling medicine, paying utilities or buying food to eat. Of these, 1,004 new families representing the new face of hunger... once considered middle class are seeking our help. 40% of our families come from North Baldwin, 35% come from the Eastern Shore, 15% come from Central Baldwin and the rest come from South Baldwin.

It costs just $20 per family to give about $120 worth of food.

Hunger is invisible.

It is the mother in line at the grocery store behind you with just a loaf of bread.  It is the person in the pew next to you at church.  It is a co-worker.  It is a child on the playground.  It is the senior citizen who shares a smile with you!

Simple ways you can help!

We can always use Prayer. Pray for the families. Pray for the volunteers that give so much of their time. 

Donations are tax deductions. Consider giving the gift of food in honor or memory of someone special, co-workers, etc.

Churches, we're asking you to consider pledging $1 dollar per giving member of your church family each month.... or taking up a special offering each month to help us continue to provide food at our current levels of quality and abundance.  $1 equals $5 in food at Prodisee Pantry.  Please take this info back to your missions committees, pastors, and congregation. 

Volunteering your time and talents.   You can review some of the volunteer duties on our website, or email us or call 626-1720.  There are lots of opportunities.  We're kid friendly too! Many hands make light work and we're run by caring compassionate volunteers. Come join us!

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