The welcome RAINS came, then stopped. The welcome PEOPLE came, and came, and came, and finally stopped, setting several new records for the Mason County Ministerial Alliance Food Bank. Despite a very leaky roof on the waiting area at the food bank, the October food distribution proceeded on schedule, serving a record 102 families, or 316 individuals. Prior to October, our monthly average was around 80 families, or 250 individuals. Check the math, folks - that’s about a 25% increase in one month’s time. That unprecedented demand for food might have been a problem for many food banks around the country, but not here in Mason County. Thanks to the generous support of many Mason County individuals, our food bank has not been forced to turn people away or to decrease the amount of food distributed. The lack of a farm bill and the government shutdown in Washington have combined to severely curtail the operation of many major food banks and food pantries around our nation. Although USDA products have been in short supply recently, our shelves at the food bank have remained well stocked for two reasons. Firstly, the food drives sponsored throughout the year by local organizations and churches provide us with a steady supply of canned goods. Secondly, Lowe’s Market has agreed to sell us food at discounted prices. Both of these food sources, plus donations from the community have allowed us to provide for all who come.
Once again, Buena Tierra Farms in Fredonia provided fresh butternut squash and Jack-O-Lantern pumpkins to help celebrate fall harvest time. Several individuals, both food box recipients and volunteers, prepared butternut squash for the first time and discovered what they have been missing. Topaz Confections dropped by with sweets for all, INCLUDING THE VOLUNTEERS - thank you!! Now that temperatures have dropped and their hens are laying again, several of our local chicken farmers had extra eggs to share with the food bank - thanks, you all. The Mason County Library provided Halloween board books for the little kids, and a beautiful book for older readers, “The Fairy and the Chupacabra and Those Marfa Lights”. More will be available in November.
The sixteen NEW families who registered at the food bank this month experienced our new way of greeting newcomers. If you are curious, and want to volunteer, join us for next month’s food distribution, November 11-13, 3-5:30PM. You can fill food orders, visit with our food recipients, stock shelves, pull food carts, whatever - all are welcome. If you can’t come in person, but would like to support the food bank, we are a 501(3)(c), our address is Mason County Ministerial Alliance, POB 690, Mason, TX, 76856.