MUST ministries still needs sack lunches & volunteers
Submitted by Kaye Cagle
Director of Marketing and Public Relations
With 2,000 children on the free and reduced school lunch rolls in Pickens County, the area is vastly underserved during the summer when children are hungry. To help remedy this problem, MUST Ministries is coordinating an effort to feed the children for the third summer in a row.
Summer Lunch began 20 years ago in Cobb and Cherokee Counties and has now spread to eight counties in the north Georgia area, but much help is desperately needed to reach those in poverty. MUST hopes to serve at least 200 of the children, but community support is required.
“We are pleased that True Vine Church, a new church in the area, has stepped up and offered to be the distribution site for Summer Lunch in Pickens,” said Paula Rigsby, program coordinator. “The church, pastored by Mickey Carver, will provide a lead volunteer and hopes others in the community with pack, check and drive meals to the children,” she explained.
“MUST needs all the help we can get in Pickens,” she stated. So far, we don’t have enough volunteers, enough drivers or enough pledged lunches. The greatest need is pledged lunches. We hope churches, businesses, clubs, sports teams, neighborhoods, families and others will pledge to bring lunches on a certain day, she explained.
The menu for each weekday is:
Monday – Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich, 2 Healthy Snacks, Juice Box
Tuesday – Ham & Cheese Sandwich, 1 Fresh Vegetable, 1 Healthy Snack, Juice Box
Wednesday – Bologna & Cheese Sandwich, 2 Healthy Snacks, Juice Box
Thursday – Ham Sandwich, 1 Fresh Fruit, 1 Healthy Snack, Juice Box
Friday – Turkey & Cheese Sandwich, 2 Healthy Snacks, Juice Box
Groups or individuals pack the lunches and bring them to the church, then volunteers check them and pack them to be transported. A volunteer driver and raider then take the meals to areas where the children have pre-registered to receive the food.
“We work with the school system to find pocket of greatest need,” Rigsby explained. “They give us guidance before the routes are selected, then we talk to parents on the route to establish the number of children in need.”
MUST Ministries, a faith-based non-profit, serves about 31,000 people in poverty each year, providing food, employment services and housing. Of those served, 18,300 are children.