Archived Story

Food sculpture at ice fest

Published 11:13pm Wednesday, January 18, 2012

ACTION’s Food Pantry Ministry at Dowagiac’s Ice Time Festival Feb. 4  will build a towering “food sculpture” from donated canned goods to go along with 20,000 pounds of carved art.
Cash donations will be accepted along with any staple canned item, according to Jeff Neumann, ACTION Ministry Center trustees chairman, who hopes the pyramid will “generate awareness and support for this vital ministry.”
The food drive is now under way with a collection bin set up at City Hall. Canned goods will be accepted until Friday, Feb. 3.
Last September ACTION (Area Churches Together In One Network) started a food pantry at 301 Main St.
Each week they provide food for up to 70 families who live within Dowagiac school district borders.
“Our funds are collected from churches and individuals who feel led to serve Christ by helping those in need,” Neumann said Wednesday. “This ministry is part of ACTION Ministry Center’s greater goal of meeting needs of the local community. We hope to expand to many other areas, providing Christ-centered services and showing God’s love to the people of Dowagiac.”
People utilizing the pantry range from single parents to households who find themselves housing extended family members due to housing or employment difficulties.
Once registered, to determine household size and number of children, friends are given a number for identification.
This gives the volunteers the freedom to serve while at the same time protecting identities from being broadcast in the distribution process.
“We gladly accept donated food,” Neumann said, “but cash donations can be multiplied though making purchases at the ‘Feeding America’ warehouse in Benton Harbor.  This facility provides food for outlets such as ours at pennies on the dollar prices. This purchasing power expands a cash donation into five or 10 times what can be purchased at a retail store. In addition to purchases, there are also products provided by the USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) for pennies per pound.”

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