The Feeding Hope Mega Food Giveaway took place at the Abundant Church’s East Campus. The event occurred on January 30, where cars could drive up and receive food.
Bryan Morrow, an Army soldier, volunteered at the event and estimates about one hundred-fifty to two hundred volunteers showed up. About two hundred-fifty cars came for food.
“For that day they said that that was normally a lower amount than previously,” Morrow said. “About a month before that, there was a line of about a thousand cars on a day.”
Terrie Heimer, an assistant principal in a nearby district who also took part, believes it is a good thing that numbers are reducing, and has multiple reasons for dedicating her time.
“Just the need in El Paso,” Heimer said. “Being part of a family that believes the same way, that we’re here for a purpose, and that purpose is to be there for each other.”
David Stanfield, a production manager at a pecan shelling plant who volunteered, helps because he lived in a home without food as a child, and got the aid he needed from others.
“We would eat ketchup sandwiches and mustard sandwiches and mayonnaise sandwiches,” Stanfield said. “Well, there came a day when we didn’t even have the bread, and there were a couple of ladies, I still remember their names, and I’m still blessed by them and what they did.”
When Stanfield was in need, two women came from the Methodist church and brought two bags of groceries for him and his family.
“Even as a child it blessed my life,” Stanfield said. “So, I want to be a change to somebody else’s life like that was for me.”
Although the food bank opens every day, different organizations in El Paso can partner with the food bank and get food donated.
“That is what happened with the church,” Morrow said. “The church worked with the food bank and was like ‘Hey, can you donate us some food and then we’ll give it out on a specific day.’”
Morrow explains there are multiple ways someone can aid in the community.
“Whether it be working at the food bank, donating stuff, there’s always a way to help out,” Morrow said. “It doesn’t necessarily always need to be with people donating money, you can just donate your time to help out.”
Stanfield believes that people can help in the community by “simply loving each other.”
“If people can learn to look at the soul of a person instead of looking at the outward appearance of a person, and genuinely just love each other,” Stanfield said, “that’s how they can help.”
He also sees serving as an effective way to help.
“To me that’s one of the greatest callings there is,” Stanfield said. “Just serve each other, no matter how simple or how hard, persevere and serve.”
Heimer finds the giveaway a beneficial way to work with others to “affect the El Paso community in a bigger way.”
“It’s always been that the church is the one that should help the community, not necessarily rely on the government or things like that,” Heimer said. “I think it’s our duty to help out the community. It’s what we have to do all the time, daily, not just at these big giveaways.”