The Lexington Kentucky North Stake helped distribute over 33,000 pounds of food to 20 local organizations last month, working with volunteers from a variety of other groups.
Samone Ratcliff, JustServe specialist for the Lexington Kentucky Stake, said the food was donated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The donations “have garnered the goodwill and respect of all who have benefited from, learned of and participated in any way in the dispersion of their contents,” Ratcliff said. “I truly believe, along with providing needed food for this area, they are bringing the name of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints out of obscurity here in eastern Kentucky.”
Trailers and trucks from recipient agencies were loaded in just over an hour, Ratcliff said. “I could hardly believe it. Such good cooperation by all who came to lend a hand.”
In addition to Church members, volunteers included people from the Rowan County School Student Services, the Nicholas County Highway Department and several local churches that weren’t receiving donations.
Volunteers also came from residents at two local drug and alcohol recovery centers, Ratcliff said.
“These young men and women were happy to be invited to help and were grateful for the chance to serve,” she said. “They did most of the heavy lifting and there was not one who was not dripping with sweat in the heat of that big warehouse. But... there were no complaints of the heat, and they were personable and friendly and worked so hard.”
The day’s project was also visited by Kentucky State Rep. Richard White, Rowan County Judge Harry Clark and several other community representatives.
Recipient organizations included the Gateway Homeless Coalition, the Doves Domestic Violence Center, the Sterling Community Food Coalition, the Bluegrass Community Health Center and the First Baptist Church of Winchester.
The food distribution occurred at the Rowan County Services Building, according to a Facebook post from the Rowan County Fiscal Court.
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and JustServe have been good to Rowan County,” the post states. “We appreciate the efforts they have made to help others, and we look forward to working with them again.”
Last month’s event wasn’t the first time that the Lexington Kentucky North Stake has been involved in a food donation project. In June, the stake helped distribute 38,444 pounds of shelf-stable food donated by the Church, Ratcliff said.
In that case, 18 Kentucky counties and 14 organizations benefited from the food, and volunteers came from nine different religious denominations.