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Those trying to help the needy in Ray County are in need of more help themselves.
Last October the Fleming Baptist Church took on the role as Ray County’s distribution center for Harvesters food pantries in Kansas City. According to a release from the church, the program has supplied more than 26,000 pounds of food since October.
The church is now serving between 80 and 90 families.
“Every month we see new faces at our pantry,” volunteer Janice Haynes says in the statement. “We see the gratefulness and hear the stories of gratitude from many people. Even past supporters and volunteers are finding themselves in need.”
Haynes said yesterday that families are lining up 30 minutes before distribution time starts. The church distributes twice a month including today from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., although many times the food does not last the entire two hours. The church distributes on the third Wednesday of every month from 5:30 to 7 p.m. and the food is free. The church serves the communities of Richmond, Orrick, Henrietta, Camden and Fleming. Proof of residency is necessary.
Haynes said with the high demand some families have been told they can only receive food once a month. She said the church spends $200 a month on food but an additional $100 to $150 a month is kicked in by volunteers.
Haynes said the church is also short on volunteers. She said the church needs help with distributions and on the Tuesday before distributions.
Haynes said the church would like the program to grow to include other communities but funding restricts the growth. She said $1 can buy as much as 10 pounds of food.
For more information or to help call Haynes at 816-776-7261 or Rev. Fred Kelley at 816-776-7625.
To donate, checks can be made out to Fleming Baptist Church with a memo designating Harvesters. All proceeds will go towards the purchase of food.