It’s another busy day on the sidewalk in front of St. Stephen’s Community House. A line of cars leads into the street, as community members wait for their food box from the Food and Nutrition Center. Employees run from car to car, working like a well-oiled machine to efficiently serve the consumers. “Thank you so much!” and “God Bless You All!” can be heard from the cars as families drive away, no longer wondering how they would eat that week.
I watched Mckayla, a case manager, pack her small Honda full of big brown boxes.
“Normally,” she said, “my car is packed to the brim!”
She had sweat on her brow and not an inch of room in the car, but this was a good thing. Each of these boxes contained enough food for a week for the families on her caseload, and a full car meant full stomachs.
Mckayla spends hours a week dropping off boxes of food to those that cannot make it to our pantry. Some are high-risk for COVID-19, some have no means of transportation, but all are grateful for one less thing to worry about.
Somedays, Mckayla’s car is packed full of items other than groceries.
A couple of weeks ago, along with a box of food, Mckayla’s car held boxes of baby clothes, a high chair, a booster seat, pack and play, diapers, and bottles. All of which were on their way to the Green household.
When the Green family was first put on Mckayla’s caseload, she was happy to assist and guide them just as she does with her other families. She quickly realized that they needed more, and she jumped into action, reaching out to
The Greens’ have tragically lost two children and were so grateful for their healthy baby boy. But along with all the joy they felt for their son, they couldn’t ignore the fact that they were struggling.
When they met Mckayla, the Greens’ had next to nothing to care for their son.
This care package that Mckayla delivered will not solve every problem that the Greens are facing, but she felt relieved knowing they now knew they had a family at St. Stephen’s that they could turn to for resources, support, and hope.
Sometimes you don’t need a grand gesture or an outlandish act of kindness. Sometimes you just need a little hope, a little love, a sign that everything will be okay. At St. Stephen’s Community House there are so many things that we do, but when you strip away the job titles and the programs, you see that we are just people giving other people that hope. Life is hard, and we take pride in making it easier for each person we encounter. With every box of food we hand out, with each bag of baby clothes, we know we are taking burdens and replacing them with blessings.