Pelham food distribution helps to feed 350 families

By NATHAN HOWELL | Staff Writer

PELHAM – The Community Food Bank of Central Alabama helped feed around 350 families during a food distribution event on July 8.

The event was held at the Pelham Civic Complex and was designed to provide assistance to families facing food insecurity in the area.

CFB used their Mobile Pantry to distribute this food in response to the storms that devastated the county back in March. Months later, the organization noticed there were still families struggling with the financial burden caused by the storm.

“When the tornadoes first hit Fultondale, Ohatchee and parts of Shelby County we provided assistance to first responders,” CFB CEO Brett Meredith said. “But as you get down the road, people start moving back into their homes and their budgets are taxed. We are holding events like this to provide food in hopes of helping to reduce their costs.”

These boxes contained around 75-80 pounds of household food items that included things like dry goods, fresh produce, peaches and butter. CFB also had access to 20-pound turkeys and gave out as many as they could.

The Mobile Pantry set up a simple drive-thru food bank, where those who needed help could line up in their cars and have the food placed in their cars with minimal contact.

Meredith said the response from the community was overwhelming.

“I got to talk to a few of the people while I was out there myself,” he said. “There was a lot of appreciation and gratefulness. Life is sometimes difficult. We all went through this pandemic for the last year and a lot of people are just now getting back to work. Then a tornado coming through and damaging their homes only made it worse. That’s why we do it.”

CFB is continuing to hold distribution events and helping families in need. It is also looking for volunteers to help assist in its efforts.

“We are serving everyday through our agency partners in the 12-county region we serve. We will have more events in the county to come,” Meredith said. “We are growing each year.”

He also acknowledged the financial support provided by Ferguson Cares, which made the food distribution possible.

For those interested, more information can be found at Feedingal.org.