The first thing that stands out about the Door of Hope Food Pantry at Pageland Seventh-day Adventist Church in Pageland, S.C. is the location: The pantry is not actually located at the church.
When the church's congregation outgrew its facility at 45 H C Gibson Road and moved to a much larger location down the street, the church knew exactly what to do with the old building: turn it into a food pantry to help some of the area's hungry families get the nourishment they need.
Now, about eight years later, the pantry has grown to serve about 1,200 families every month, distributing food Wednesdays and Fridays every week. Much of the distributed food comes through donations from the local Food Lion location two miles down the road.
But when Harvest Hope Food Bank submitted Door of Hope's nomination for a recipient of this year's Food Lion Feed's Great Pantry Makeover, we saw a great opportunity to do even more to help expand this community organization's ability to serve its neighbors.
"The Door of Hope delivers more than just food, and this project helps us to be an integral part of this community," said Dr. Lawrence Elliot, director of the food pantry.
And what a community event today's makeover was!
Food Lion associates joined with Door of Hope volunteers to paint the entire interior of the facility, install new vinyl flooring, refrigerators, and shelving, and stock the pantry full of over 1,100 pounds of nutritious food.
And the Food Lion and Door of Hope team received a big boost when out of nowhere, a member of the community who heard about the effort came by to donate his time, effort, and tools to help the team accomplish the task at hand.
Travis Lewis, owner of Lewis Construction, heard about The Great Pantry Makeover event while he was chatting with the woman next to him in line – who just so happened to be a volunteer at the pantry – at the local hardware store earlier in the day.
Travis later appeared at the pantry and in no time the team had finished the flooring in the main room of the pantry.
It was a wonderful example of members of the community coming together at a time of need to serve their neighbors.
Dr. Elliot, Travis, and the Food Lion associates and Door of Hope volunteers participating today all played a role in giving back to their community, and when it comes to fighting hunger, it really does take us all.
"Food Lion appears to have the same focus on community as the Door of Hope has, which is why we've developed such a strong partnership," added Dr. Elliot.
Those partnerships with our neighbors in the towns and cities we serve and our shared commitment to do good is the true meaning of community, and Food Lion could not be prouder to stand shoulder to shoulder with our neighbors and give back to all of the communities we serve.