Up & Coming Weekly

November 16, 2021

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 10 of 24

10 UCW NOVEMBER 17-23, 2021 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM SPIRIT OF GIVING Second Harvest Food Pantry supports southeast North Carolina Action Pathway opened in Cumberland County almost 40 years ago. During that time, they evolved into the Second Harvest Food Bank. ey are a partner of Feeding America and serve those in Cumberland, Bladen, Duplin, Harnett, Hoke, Robeson and Sampson counties. David Griffin, the Action Pathways Food Bank Director, says they service 196 agencies and organizations daily. With COVID-19 impacting so many people last year, Second Harvest Food Bank saw an increase in need. Last year they distrib- uted 14.6 million pounds of food. "We saw a 40 percent increase in first-time pantry usage at our agencies and at distribu- tion," Griffin said. ey will be hosting a mass food distribution to anyone who needs it at the Smith Recreation Center, near Fayetteville State University. It will be a drive-thru distribution and they will be providing produce, canned food and meat. e food will hopefully last families at least a week. e mass distribution will take place on Nov. 20 and will start around 9:30 a.m. It will be first- come, first-serve. ey will have enough food for 250 households and will serve no more than 2 households per car. Second Harvest is also col- lecting items at this time. ey are looking for donations of canned foods, cereal and non-perishables at this time — includ- ing hygiene products and household items. People can also volunteer their time with Second Harvest. Griffin said that they are looking for people with all different types of skillsets to help volunteer. is can be clerical work, social media/marketing skills or just helping to hand out food at a distribution site. Volunteers are welcome at any time of the year, not just during the holiday season. "We continue to bring food to those under- served in our communities," Griffin said. "It doesn't stop with the holidays, it goes on all 12 months of the year." Another distribution event is planned in December in Cumberland County. Griffin said they are still working on details, but they hope to help at least 1,200 people by bringing in three 18-wheeler trucks full of food. If you want to volunteer your time, donate food, or if you need help, their contact number is 910-485-6923. Fayetteville Technical Community College Food Pantry supports local students e Fayetteville Technical College Food Pantry started exactly a year ago opening its doors on November 17, 2020. e FTCC Food Pantry was born in an unexpected manner when it came to light that a sociology professor had been keeping a small pantry of items for students in need in her office. Worsened by the impact of the pandemic it became clear that FTCC students needed extra support in the wake of lost jobs and financial insecurity. "It kind of magically happened," explained Sandy Ammons, executive director, FTCC Foun- dations. e FTCC Food Pantry is placing specific attention on their need for gift cards this holiday season. e Christmas season is of more immedi- ate concern to the FTCC Food Pantry because it stretches over a longer period of time than the anksgiving break. Additionally, while harder to come by food items such as canned hams and meats are being requested for donation, the food pantry has a mix of students who use their ser- vices ranging from families to single students. Gift cards allow for more flexibility in how they are able to support their students in need. Some folks just enjoy the experience of shopping to help oth- ers, so all donations are welcomed. "We are just grateful," Ammons said of any donations received. e FTCC Food Pantry is set up like a grocery store; students can shop from shelves that are stocked with food, household items, personal care and baby items. To be eligible, students must be currently enrolled in classes and have a valid FTCC ID. Students can stop in at the FTCC Food Bank fill out a short form explaining their need and circumstances and help follows. e Food Pantry is located on the backside of the Horace Sisk Building (HOS) 2204 Hull Road, Fayetteville, NC 28303. Donations are dropped off at a separate location from the Food Pantry. ose wishing to make donations of food and other personal care items are asked to bring those items to the Property Control Office located at 284 Hull Road, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. To donate money or gift cards, contact the FTCC Foundation at 910.678-8441 or founda- tion@faytechcc.edu; to donate to the FTCC Food Pantry, visit www.faytechcc.edu/giving/give- now/; to learn more about the FTCC Food Pantry, visit www.faytechcc.edu/giving/food-pantry/. Fort Bragg's Armed Services YMCA Food Pantry In October of 2019, the Armed Services YMCA at Fort Bragg opened a food pantry for all service members regardless of rank. e ASYMCA Food Pantry helps address food insecurity for active-duty military families and area veterans. "e program is a 'client choice' model where patrons can shop from a variety of well-balanced perishable and non-perishable items," explained Jeremy Hester, executive director, ASYMCA Fort Bragg. e food pantry is open on Wednesdays and Fri- days as well as one Saturday a month. Participants are able to register online to schedule a visit to the pantry once a month. e program is confidential and referrals are not needed for junior enlisted ser- vice members, families and veterans. Senior enlisted and officers will need a signed memorandum from a commander. e ASYMCA Food Pantry always welcomes sup- port and finds that monetary donations are most helpful, but they will also welcome food drives or drop-off donations. Donations can be dropped at 2411 Rodney Trail, Building #2, on Fort Bragg. Monetary donations can be made at fortbragg.asymca.org/give/340604/#!/ donation/checkout. With the upcoming holiday season, the best way to find out what is needed and what is happening is to follow AFYMCA on Facebook and Instagram. Donation needs vary week to week and a weekly wishlist is released on Facebook every Wednesday. Families can register on the website for the food pantry and a turkey giveaway. ere will be extend- ed hours and weekend hours during the holiday months. Whatever the needs of service members and their families during this holiday season, the ASYMCA is geared up to help. "We want all families in the community to reach out to us no matter rank or situation; especially during the holidays, we are here to help everyone," Hester said. Hester added that even if families are not able to register online, the ASYMCA is open 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Families are free to call or come by to see how the AFYMCA can assist, whether it's with the Food Pantry or any of the other programs they have available. Additional informa- tion and registration for service members in need can be found at www.asymca.org/what-we-do-fort- bragg. Fayetteville food pantries prepare for holiday season, giveback by HANNAH LEE AND EMILY SUSSMAN

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