A relatively new food program for Athens County allows area residents to purchase food products for roughly half of the normal price. The food program is the national Angel Food Ministry program, and it is being run locally by Abundant Life Church of Athens. The program accepts Food Assistance Benefits cards, but there are no income limits.
“It’s a great way for people to stretch their food dollars,” said Bob Gall, minister for Abundant Life Church. Anyone can use the food program, and Gall is hoping that more area residents will take advantage of it. Here is how it works:
Area residents order food boxes once a month on-line or at the church on designated days. The program offers several different types of food boxes at different prices. One popular box, for example, provides $60 worth of food, but it only costs participants $30. Angel Food Ministries, which is based in Georgia, buys the food products in bulk and takes orders from churches all across the country. Because they are purchasing in bulk, they are able to order the food for low prices that are then passed on to the consumers.
Area residents choose the boxes they want to order, and they are able to purchase as many as they like. The food items are distributed once each month at the church, usually on the third Friday of the month. Participants are asked to bring boxes, bags or laundry baskets with them to place their food items in, to make it easier to carry them home. The food items can be sold at low prices because both Angel Food Ministries and the Abundant Life Church are not trying to make a profit, they are just trying to distribute food.
“To me, this is just a no-lose situation,” Gall said. Response to the program has been good so far at the Abundant Life Church, but Gall is hoping that many more people will learn about the program and use it. Abundant Life Church is located at 9365 Hooper Road, which is near U.S. Rt. 50/Ohio Rt. 32. For more information on the program, call the church at 593-7500 or log onto the website, located at http://theabundantlifetoday.org.