Angel Food Ministries helps families in tough times

By Chyna Broadnax | Statesville R&L

Published: August 24, 2009

In today’s economy, consumers are looking for deals in order to save every penny.
Monthly grocery bills can be costly, but some local churches are easing the financial pain for some families.

For $30 a month, Angel Food Ministries can provide a family of four with a week’s worth of groceries or a single person a month of food, according to Barbara Bunton, pastor of True Vine Tabernacle, the first local church to offer Angel Food Ministries program.

“It’s for anybody, no matter what their financial situation may be,” she said.

Angel Food Ministries offers a box of food at a discount price with each month’s menu varying.

A unit of food consists of fresh vegetables, desserts and meats. It is valued at $65.

“It’s name-brand, first-quality food,” Bunton said.

Orders are taken the first two weeks of the month and the food boxes can be picked up by customers at their desired location on a designated date.

Convenience meals are also available for seniors and frozen and dry-mix allergen food boxes are another option for customers.

The program, which began 15 years ago in Georgia, started in Iredell County seven years ago at True Vine Tabernacle in Statesville, according to Bunton.

The church serves as the distribution point, where participating churches pick up the food to be handed out at their respective locations.

The program has gained popularity among other churches and organizations.

Angel Food Ministries has spread to six other locations in Iredell County, including Front Street Baptist Church, Presbyterian Church of the Springs, YMCA of Iredell County, Faith Baptist Church, Bethel UMC, and Monticello UMC.

Pam Hellman, the host site manager for the YMCA of Iredell County’s Angel Food distribution program, said she has seen a steady stream of people since starting the program at the site nearly two years ago.

She said purchasing the boxes “really stretches” your budget.

“It frees up money for them to use for other things,” she said.

Bunton said she would like to see more people using Angel Food Ministries.

“Times are so rough and don’t seem to be getting any better,” she said. “It’s a good financial move for people.

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