Cars line up for food giveaway in East Rockingham

By Kevin Spradlin

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com The line forms along Patterson Street off of Airport Road so as to not disrupt the flow of traffic.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
The line forms along Patterson Street off of Airport Road so as to not disrupt the flow of traffic.


PeeDeePost.com

Previous coverage
* Demand for food ‘way beyond my supply’

EAST ROCKINGHAM — Bishop T.R. Harrington isn’t exactly sure how word got out.

It could have been the July 21 article in The Pee Dee Post in which Harrington, of Tabernacle Full Gospel We Care Food Center on Airport Road in East Rockingham, spoke of how the demand for food was “way beyond my supply.”

It could have been something else entirely.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Marshall Patterson, 20, is on summer break from classes at Richmond Community College and volunteers at the Tabernacle Full Gospel We Care Food Center in East Rockingham.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Marshall Patterson, 20, is on summer break from classes at Richmond Community College and volunteers at the Tabernacle Full Gospel We Care Food Center in East Rockingham.

Either way, Harrington found between July 21 and Thursday that the world is getting smaller and that while he meant for his plea for help to reach his Richmond County, the idea of “community” is a lot bigger thanks to the Internet and social media.

Dozens of drivers lined their cars along Patterson Street and waited their turn to pull to the front of Tabernacle Full Gospel Baptist Church, where a small army of volunteers worked to ensure each wanting family received a box full of breads, dried goods, soups, fruits and more.

Oranges, blueberries, strawberries. Macaroni and Cheese, chicken broth, V-8 juice, potato chips, coffee. Marshall Patterson, 20, said he’s been volunteering at the food pantry since high school. While on summer break from classes at Richmond Community College, he returns to the pantry to help carry boxes of food to private vehicles of those in need.

There was no meat this distribution day, which occurs every other Thursday at 2 p.m. Harrington said that’s because the budget wouldn’t permit it. But he said he received wider support than he could have expected. One person called from Wisconsin to offer support and guidance on how to manage the food pantry.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Drivers wait patiently for their turn at the front of the line.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Drivers wait patiently for their turn at the front of the line.

“This is the most we have ever gotten,” Harrington said.

Last week, Harrington met with The Pee Dee Post and expressed concern that a food distribution effort in place since about 1987 was in jeopardy of shutting down — and leaving dozens of families with nothing — due to a lack of support.

Harrington said he still hasn’t received any help from churches in the county, but he’s hopeful.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Volunteers help in the store room of the food pantry on distribution day.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Volunteers help in the store room of the food pantry on distribution day.

 

 

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  • JD

    I thought the “Daily Bread” associated with 1st United Methodist Church was in operation and supposedly “supported” by local churches. It was supposed to be a “clearinghouse” for those in need. Has this gentleman been in touch with them? Does he work within their guidelines? Understand I am not complaining, I am complementing his work, but is it redundant? Perhaps the Pee Dee Post could call/interview some of the prominent church leaders in town, Marvin Taylor, Mitchell Roller, Eddie McLean, etc and see why their congregations are not offering a helping hand.

  • Curious

    What are the requirements for the free food? Do you have to be truly indigent or are people just looking for another freeby with no shame?

    • Sassy

      I’d like to know too if there are requirements for the free food. If not, then there should be. If there are people who receive the free food and they have the means necessary to purchase food, then they are only looking for a “freeby” and they are literally taking food from those who need it most.

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