As improbable as it sounds, residents of western Wayne County, here in our backyard, are in the middle of a food desert, which is an area defined by the United States Department of Agriculture that is void of fresh fruit, vegetables, and other healthful whole foods due to a lack of grocery stores.
Co-Alliance employees work daily to support American farmers who feed people and we believe strongly in eliminating food insecurity. When the Centerville United Methodist Church approached us in January requesting financial support, we didn’t have to look hard to find a reason why this fit our mission of Lead, Grow, Give, Remember.
The number of families the church’s Monthly Food Ministry assists is steadily increasing. They averaged 42 households in 2017; 68 households in 2018 and 2019; and 76 in 2020. December of 2020 saw a record 103 families receive food. As the pandemic persisted into 2021, the numbers continued to grow.
Co-Alliance partnered with Land O’Lakes matching grant program to each contribute $1,000 towards the monthly food ministry so the people of Wayne County, our kind of people, have healthy food on their table. Every dollar of our $2,000 donation goes directly to purchase food items from Gleaners Food bank of Indiana. Overhead such as transportation costs, clerical costs, etc. is covered by members and friends of the Centerville United Methodist Church.
This is our third $2,000 donation to the food ministry, totaling our giving to $6,000 in the area considered a food desert in Wayne County. We’re proud to contribute such an amount, and humbled to know this need exists in the heart of our hometowns.