Ash Grove Food Pantry Serves with Compassion and Care
For years, restaurant owner Joan Cotter served leftovers to hungry families at the end of the day. When she made the difficult decision to close her doors, she wanted to make sure struggling families still had food to put on the table at the end of the day.
Joan invited local businesses and community leaders to join her in opening Ash Grove’s first food pantry.
In May of 2009, Ash Grove Food Pantry held its first food distribution. The pantry began partnering with Ozarks Food Harvest in 2011.
“We struggled financially those first two years, but we kept working at it month by month,” Deanna, Ash Grove Food Pantry’s board president said. “God provided us with one more bag every time we needed it, and here we are ten years later, still going strong.”
Ash Grove Food Pantry’s food distribution takes place on the third Saturday of every month and is frequented by individuals from Ash Grove, Bois D’Arc, Willard and Everton. Volunteers also deliver food to seniors and homebound individuals.
“It is our privilege to be able to help, even if it is in a small way, and we feel our clients get more than just food from us. We want them to know we consider them our friends,” Deanna said.
The pantry’s volunteers extend compassion and care to every person who comes through the doors, and they make sure everyone gets exactly what they need.
“We have one client who lives in a camper trailer in the country…he doesn’t even have running water. We found out he had been getting his drinking water from a creek. We try to give him bottled water every time he comes in now,” Deanna shared.
The pantry and its volunteers are celebrating 10 years of service, and Deanna believes they have a strong future ahead.
“I would love to see a day when all children never have to suffer food securities again, a time where single parents don’t have to worry about having gas to get to work and being able to put that one more meal on the table and a time when seniors no longer have to choose between food and medicine,” Deanna shared. “But until that time, Ash Grove Food Pantry will continue to do all we can to help.”
Ozarks Food Harvest is thankful for Ash Grove Food Pantry and how it serves hungry children, families and seniors in the community.
Learn more about Ash Grove Food Pantry.