I grew up in a small, rural town (I mean very small. One stop light. One flashing light.) I moved to the Cincinnati area 5 years ago. I still drive the hour and 10 minutes back home often to see family and once every 5 weeks to visit the local salon. Recently on a trip back home I heard something that has broke and stirred my heart with compassion. Children are going hungry! We are no longer talking about a third world country. This is happening right under our noses daily as we walk around in a zombie-like state consumed with our social media and to-do list thinking it only happens in other places. Truth is? There is a mission field in your back door and often times the neighbor across the street.
I met a young woman at my church who spoke of her childhood. All through school she went hungry. There were often only beans to eat. Baths were often taken in the creek when there was no electric or water. But mom and dad always had cigarettes and beer. This was not during the depression era, this was in the early 2000’s. It breaks my heart to think of her as a little girl going to bed hungry.
“Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.” – Isaiah 58:10
During the school year children who have 2 charges are then fed a peanut butter sandwich by the school. School administrators call the parents and ask them to please fill out the “free lunch” forms so their children can have a hot meal. The parents often refuse to fill out the form for varying reasons. The end result? Their children go through the day with only a peanut butter sandwich. Do you remember how hungry you were by lunch or at the end of a school day? Me too.
A small child came home and told their mother that friends were not eating lunch and were hungry by the end of the day. The compassion of this child was compelling. The mother tried putting more on the students account, packing their lunch, and letting the friends use the account. She was advised she could not do this. So instead? This woman goes to the school anonymously every month or so and pays for the charges, often wiping out her own bank account so the children can eat.
During the summer the Ministerial Association of my home town has come together to feed the children. Each church or business takes turns going to the small park and having food for the children who eagerly show up to get at least one meal that day.
But what about the weekends? The local school district ensures the students are fed during the day, but a lot of children have no means of getting food for the weekend. The Leesburg Ministerial Association, in conjunction with the Freestore Foodbank, would like to alleviate this problem and make sure no child in the community goes to bed hungry. With your help, Power Packs can be provided to the children at school before they leave for the weekend. Power Packs provide nutritious non-perishable food and drinks for two days that is easy for every child to prepare.
The cost is $4 per pack during the 40 weeks school is in session. $160.00 per year, per student in need, would ensure no child goes to bed hungry on the weekends. They are asking for pledges of $160 for the next three years to further the cause. If you cannot pledge to this amount, any donation would be greatly appreciated just the same. All donations are tax deductible and checks/money orders can be made payable to the “Fairfield Ministerial Program” and sent to 236 South Fairfield St., Leesburg, OH 45135.
I ask that you please pray for the children not only in Leesburg, but all across the United States who are going to bed hungry. If enough people rise up to take care of the mission fields in their own back yards, we can change our little corner of the world! I truly believe that small acts, done with great love, can change the world!!
If I had the means? I’d write the check without blinking. Unfortunately, I don’t have that kind of money in the bank. But I do have a voice. We all have a voice. And it’s time we rise up and take care of the least of these who can’t take care of themselves.
Be blessed and well my friends,