City of Light

Helping hands

CITY OF LIGHT HELPINGS HANDS FOOD PANTRY 
DISTRIBUTES FREE GROCERIES WEEKLY TO THE COMMUNITY

City of Light Helping Hands partners with community organizations to 
provide free groceries to the public 

CITY OF LIGHT HELPINGS HANDS FOOD PANTRY 
DISTRIBUTES FREE GROCERIES WEEKLY TO THE COMMUNITY

City of Light Helping Hands partners with community organizations to 
provide free groceries to the public 

Image by Macau Photo Agency

(Silver Spring, MD - September 24) – The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically affected our communities and the world at large. To provide aid during these difficult times, City of Light Helping Hands, a Community Development Outreach of Kings & Priests’ Court Int’l Ministries (KPCI), is reaching out.

 

Prior to COVID-19, KPCI held food distributions on Thursdays. Since April, the City of Light Helping Hands Food Pantry has evolved on a larger scale and captured the attention of Montgomery County and other food security industries. City of Light Helping Hands has partnered with Montgomery County, Healthcare Initiative Foundation, Capital Area Food Bank, Mid-Atlantic Food Resilience & Access Coalition, Greater Washington Community Foundation, American Diversity Group, Immigrant Community Services Inc., and Manna Food Center to provide free groceries to the community. 

Every Sunday, participants line their cars from 8 am until distribution begins at 12:30 pm so that they can be at the front of the queue. Once distribution begins at 12:30 pm, hardworking volunteers place bags and boxes of food into their trunks.

 

The boxes and bags include essential food items such as rice, pasta, fruits, vegetables, eggs, bread, milk, canola oil, vegetable oil, cereal, beans, canned foods, and much more.

 

The groceries also include ethnic and cultural food items such as smoked fish (kuta and kini), palm oil, cassava leaves, kenkey, banku, Indian spices, masa brosa, etc. In addition, KPCI is very excited to announce that Montgomery County has given us a grant to acquire a refrigerated truck with a cooler/walk-in freezer.

 

This food truck allows us to serve even more families in need. Thank you Montgomery County!

Packing Boxes

Volunteers also distribute boxes to staff at local nursing homes such as Genesis Healthcare at Fairland Road and Collingswood in Rockville. Members of the community are elated about the food pantry. A participant happily commented, “Kudos to KPCI for the way the food distribution was handled today.

 

I was in line to pick up food for a friend who doesn’t have any means of transportation. I arrived around 11:00 am and the cars lined up had reached the Church down the street. In the span of approximately 30 minutes, there were about 40-50 cars lined up behind me. The way the entire process was organized was very outstanding. Even the attitude of the people directing the fleet of cars from entering the parking lot to exiting, was phenomenal. The gentle pleasantries by everyone were welcoming.” 

The outpour of support has been tremendous. Sierra Leone Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency, Ambassador Sidique Abou-Bakarr Wai and his wife, recently joined us.

 

We were also joined by Montgomery County Councilmember - Will Jawando, Director of Eastern Montgomery County Regional Center - Jewru Bandeh, Rev. Kendra Smith from Kingdom Fellowship, Jackie DeCarlo – Chief Executive Officer of Manna Food Center, and Mayur Mody of American Diversity Group.

 

We are very grateful for our partnership with the various organizations and all the volunteers that work very hard each week to help make this possible. We would like to thank Amerigroup for donating grocery bags, and the African American Health Program for providing resources. A very big thank you to our partners, Josephine Garnem, Marla Caplon, and Patrick Campbell with Montgomery County, our volunteers, Administrative team, and our able Pastor, Rev. Dr. Abdul K. Sesay.

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