By Stacey Verge, Executive Director, Acord Food Pantry
Did you realize that 1 in 8 people in Massachusetts suffer from food insecurity?
Most people don’t realize just how prevalent food insecurity is within their own towns and neighborhoods. Acord Food Pantry in Hamilton is here to help those who suffer from food insecurity here on the North Shore. We support 4,000 visits each year as we work towards our mission of empowering individuals and families to feed themselves in a nutritionally balanced way. We are so fortunate to be housed in a Harborlight Community Partners owned building, Firehouse Place (which houses four affordable units). HCP allows us to provide our invaluable services to so many in the community by giving Acord a great place to operate our food pantry.
At Acord, we serve many people who are in need from all walks of life those who are elderly and on a fixed income (including HCP residents), those who are disabled, those who are going through a rough patch and need a little assistance and even those who are employed. The high cost of living can mean that even those who are employed full time still can’t cover all of their bills and provide healthy food for their families. Acord relies on many others to help us provide food assistance and other client programs. We receive so much support and so many contributions from businesses, foundations and individual donors. Local farms help to provide fresh, local produce. Schools teach service to their students by organizing food drives. Local businesses hold food drives and collect monetary donations. We have over 100 volunteers who give so much of themselves every month. And even Tony, an HCP Firehouse Place resident, takes in our empty barrels and keeps an eye on things, especially in the winter months..
Acord could not do what we do without the support of so many community partners, such a HCP. Working together to help out those in need in our communities makes all of our communities much stronger.
As we head into the holiday season, filled with family gatherings, holiday planning and celebrations, please take some time out to be thankful for all that you have and remember your neighbors who may need a little extra assistance. And maybe reach out to those organizations who help to take care of those who are most vulnerable in our communities.
About our Guest Blogger:
Stacey Verge has served as the Executive Director of Acord for over two years, and loves working someplace where most of the phone calls and emails she receives are from people offering to help out in some way. It renews your faith in people.