Delray Beach Church Packs Food Kits With FFTP To Help Fellow Haitians
COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Aug. 29, 2023) – Motivated by a desire to help their fellow Haitians in desperate need, Bethel Evangelical Baptist Church opened its doors Saturday to work with Food For The Poor (FFTP) and pack 658 family food kits.
The kits consist of enough food to feed an average family of four for one week.
Two assembly-line style conveyor belts from FFTP were set up inside the church on West Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach, with 51 church members lined up on both sides to fill boxes with essential food items such as parboiled rice, corn meal, pasta, canned tuna, canned beans, and canned fruit and vegetables.
The beats of Haitian music energized the room until the last box was packed in under 90 minutes.
One volunteer, Michelle Arney Monthervil, shared how moved she was by the opportunity to serve and make a difference.
“I’m excited that we’re able to help my country,” Arney Monthervil said. “With the situation in the country, right now is the best time to receive something like this. This is the best way you can tell someone about Jesus, by showing love and compassion. When someone gets these food kits, they’ll know someone else is thinking about them.”
Bethel Evangelical Baptist Church, which has a Haitian congregation, has supported FFTP’s efforts in the past to provide relief to Haiti. Recently, the church funded the construction of 20 homes in L’Aisle, Haiti, which was matched by FFTP to build 20 additional homes.
For months, Haiti has been beset by a humanitarian crisis fueled by civil unrest and gang violence.
Approximately 5 million people in Haiti – nearly half the population – are projected to suffer from acute hunger. In addition to growing food insecurity, cholera re-emerged in Haiti last October as fuel shortages hindered water treatment efforts and reduced the supply of safe drinking water, forcing many to rely on untreated water.
Pastor Evens Jules thanked FFTP for working with the church to help Haiti.
“It’s a pleasure for us to work with you. We pray that this is just the beginning, and it will continue,” Pastor Jules said.
Michael Chin Quee, FFTP’s Executive Vice President of Church Alliances, said God works through community and the Bethel Evangelical Baptist Church community is one He chose to work through Saturday to bless people in Haiti whom the congregation will never meet.
“As these food kits go from here, we pray that they get to their destination in Haiti safely and into the hands of those that need them,” Chin Quee said.
In addition to packing food kits, church members also wrote notes of encouragement to the families who will ultimately receive the food kits.
FFTP brought the packed kits back to its Coconut Creek headquarters, where they will be prepared for shipment to Haiti.
The packing event is another avenue through which FFTP is helping people who are struggling with food insecurity due to disasters or other extreme conditions.
It is part of a pilot project FFTP initiated last year in response to requests by churches, businesses, and organizations that want to host events in partnership with the charity.
In preparation for the project, FFTP worked with its in-country partners in the Caribbean and Latin America to determine what foods would be most appropriate to include in the kits. From there, the charity developed a list of foods in specific sizes and quantities that will fit securely in the kits and clear customs without difficulty.
“This relationship with Bethel Evangelical Baptist Church is both a platform and a springboard into a larger opportunity with the Baptist Church and other churches,” Chin Quee said.
Food For The Poor, one of the largest international relief and development organizations in the nation, does much more than feed millions of hungry children and families living in poverty primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, water, medicine, educational materials, homes, support for vulnerable children, care for the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.