LEMOORE — According to the Lemoore Chamber of Commerce, the importance of God’s Bread Box to the community is, well, bigger than a breadbox.
The Chamber has named the community outreach program its 2018 Organization of the Year and will be honoring it at the 60th annual Installation and Awards Banquet Friday, Jan. 19.
“We were very surprised to be named. Especially since we’re such a young organization,” said CEO Nancy Stebbins.
The organization, which was founded in 2011, seeks to alleviate hunger in Lemoore by holding monthly food distribution events.
The organization relies on community donations and occasional grants to feed families that show up regularly – around 200 each month.
Most of those food-insecure families, who receive one box of canned goods, bread, meat and non-perishables per household, are regulars. Though, Stebbins says she usually sees at least a few new faces at each event.
In the last six years, over 1,300 families have registered for the free boxes of food, which only requires an ID and a utility bill that proves residence in Lemoore or Statford.
God’s Bread Box operates on a monthly budget of $3,000 and most of its food comes from the Fresno Community Food Bank.
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A group of around 20 volunteers, including the nine individuals on the board of directors, hand out the food from 8:30-11 a.m. every fourth Saturday of the month. They also meet to organize that food the Friday afternoon beforehand.
“Sometimes we have more volunteers than we need and sometimes we’re shorthanded,” Stebbins said. “It just depends.”
Stebbins says that the families who receive help via God's Bread Box leave as full of gratitude as their stomachs will be with dinner.
Stebbins expressed gratitude of her own to the Lemoore Chamber of Commerce for recognizing the work of the organization and said that only more good will come from it.
“This award will bring more awareness to the organization, which hopefully means more people and more funds,” Stebbins said. “I think this is a great thing for us.”
The God’s Bread Box events are held in the parking lot of the Christ Church Anglican Mission, 740 N. 19th Ave. in Lemoore.
For more information, call 997-6360 or visit www.godsbreadbox.org.