ELKHART — The air was cold on Thursday morning, but 65 volunteers bundled up in coats and scarves didn’t seem to mind as they handed out donations, bringing a sense of warmth to hundreds of families in Elkhart County this winter.
Feed the Children, a national charity organization, delivered a pair of semi tractor-trailers stuffed with 2,400 boxes of food and personal care items for Christ’s Commissary Food Pantry clients at First Brethren Church on C.R. 16 in Elkhart. Pantries and Kitchens United of Elkhart County distributed vouchers to 800 families who each received a 25-pound box of food and a 10-pound box of hygiene products plus a package of Avon items, including gloves and shoes.
Leonard Cook, pastor at River of Life Community Church, was among the volunteers who helped direct traffic and load boxes of donations into cars.
“We have a lot of need right now, and people are really desperate,” he said. “This helps them, especially in the winter.”
Jim Piechorowski, who serves on the board of directors for Pantries and Kitchens United, said the economy has gotten better, and a lot of younger people have gone back to work after being laid off, but the need is still there.
“For the most part, the majority of the people I’ve been meeting here this morning are 55 and over,” Piechorowski said. “There are a lot of people on fixed incomes that frankly can’t make it without assistance. This is giving them a little boost in hard times, when they need it the most.”