In late 2020, Julie Greynolds and other members of Quiet Dell UMC saw a need in their community that was not being met. While the church’s food pantry program had been established for nearly 30 years, they realized that neither their pantry nor any others in the area offered fresh ingredients like produce and dairy to community members facing food insecurity. With increased costs throughout the pandemic and a rising demand for fresh food, the church decided that they were in a unique position to fulfill this need.
As they began to explore how their church could answer this calling, they developed a plan to address the immediate, acute need to supply their food pantry clients with fresh ingredients that were previously unavailable. Quiet Dell UMC sought out a way to purchase a commercial refrigerator and fill it with items such as milk, eggs, and cheese. Long term, the church members saw a vision for a community garden that would supply fresh fruits and vegetables to anyone in their community in need.
A grant from The Foundation in the spring of 2021 helped make their vision a reality. This grant allowed the church to purchase the commercial refrigerator (pictured to the left) and stock it with ingredients. It also provided tools for them to plant and maintain the community garden, starting in the summer of 2021. By summer of 2022, the Quiet Dell Community Gardens of Grace became a self-sustaining mission. They were even able to expand their garden and intend on continuing to expand every year. The refrigerator is stocked using donations from church and community members along with the bountiful harvests from the garden.
The Quiet Dell pantry operates without any income guidelines for recipients. “Whoever walks through the door is gonna get food,” stated Julie Greynolds. When speaking about the idea to plant the garden and expand the pantry, Julie emphasizes the idea of legacy. The church wanted to create something that would continue to grow throughout the years and outlast the people who planted the first seeds.
Do you have a vision for how your church or ministry can create a legacy in your community? The Foundation would love to help you fulfil your vision. Contact us to learn more about how we can partner in ministry.