As the Nettleton F.A.I.T.H. Food Pantry prepared for its monthly Saturday food pantry on Oct. 19, it did so knowing these next few months will see its largest share of clients for the year.
Meanwhile, the Oxford Community Market continues its third annual year of the Harvest Angel Project, which buys food from local farmers for harvest baskets to be distributed to the Oxford Food Pantry for Thanksgiving.
Both initiatives center around addressing food insecurity. According to 2017 data from Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap 2019, Lee County had 13,690 food insecure people in 2017 while Monroe had 6,150. SNAP participation in Lafayette County was 1,689 households for a value of $387,330 in June 2018, according to the 2018 Annual Report from the Mississippi Department of Human Services.
Since its inception in 2013, the Oxford Community Market has been the only Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) retailer market in Lafayette County, according to community market director Bethany Chapman. The market sees at least 400 customers at its weekly Tuesday farmer’s market and has been able to grow the number of programs they have available to help low income community members have access to fresh food.
“One of the central parts of our mission is to address food insecurity and use the farmer’s market as a vehicle to sort of level the playing field,” Chapman said.
The Harvest Angel project is just one example of how the market addresses food insecurity, said Chapman. Thanks to support…