Our mission at Chester County Food Bank is to mobilize our community to ensure access to real, healthy food. We work toward this ambitious goal in a number of ways, from education to outreach. But, ultimately, it all comes down to feeding people — to help meet that most basic of human needs. We are so proud to partner with member agencies large and small across Chester County that help us distribute the huge quantities of food that we receive through monetary and food drive donations, as well as the items we buy with our purchasing power.
We love learning more about the organizations that help us bring this food into the community and make sure it reaches our neighbors in need who need it most. One such organization is Jubilee Evangelistic Ministries in Coatesville, which, under the leadership of Apostle Frank Fullwood, has been running a grassroots community feeding program since 1994.
“We felt inspired to reach out not just to share our faith, but to try to meet some of the social needs in the community. One of the ways we did that was initiating a feeding program,” Apostle Fullwood said.
This small church used to fund the program out of its own collection plate offerings, but then it connected with CCFB in the early 2000s. Using fresh, canned and frozen foods that we provide, the church now provides hot meals every Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m.–1 p.m. and also sends meals to the W.C. Atkinson Memorial Community Services Center (a men’s shelter in Coatesville) on Sundays. Over the past few years, Jubilee has expanded to food distribution as well, with a monthly pantry (every fourth Thursday of the month) where food baskets are given out to between 60–70 families who register. The weekly meals average about 80–100 meals, which adds up to roughly 800 meals each month! Three years ago, the church launched a summer feeding program to help kids who normally get subsidized school meals.
Jubilee also offers hot meals on major holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day, with local law enforcement officers and politicians pitching in to help serving and delivering meals. Deacon Ellis Thompson, who has been with the church for eight years, says, “The people who come in are from the community, and that’s what our ministry is about: helping those in need. It’s rewarding, seeing people get emotional when they see how nice the meal is, or what they get in their food box. Some people have told me, ‘I haven’t had a turkey dinner in years.’ We do this because we have a passion for it.”
Apostle Fullwood echoes that statement, saying that he felt challenged by his Christian faith to meet the practical needs of people, not just try to minister to them spiritually. “If people are hungry or displaced, they have a hard time connecting with trying to put their faith in God. The whole food ministry is birthed out of a need to meet people’s practical and physical needs, and hopefully use that as a platform to share the faith with them.”
We appreciate the work that Jubilee Evangelistic Ministries is doing in the community, and appreciate its generosity and dedication!
Want to learn more? Sign up for our newsletter and stay connected. You can also donate food, funds and time to help us achieve our mission. Call (610) 873-6000 to speak to someone about getting involved or requesting a tour. Thanks to you, we’re growing a healthier community.
The Chester County Food Bank is the central hunger relief organization serving more than 120 food cupboards, meal sites and social service organizations throughout Chester County. We mobilize our community to ensure access to real, healthy food.
Photos, top to bottom: Pexels; Chester County Food Bank, Bigstock