Food Distribution

Light of Hope volunteers Brad Francis, Steven Anderson and Kimberlee Francis and Mercy Chef disaster relief director Lisa Saylor distributed boxes last Saturday at Cedar Point Church in the cold weather.

Schedule

Mercy Chefs, a nonprofit organization, has teamed with local churches and organizations to distribute food boxes this week.

Saturday — 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Cedar Point Church, 1660 N Lynn Riggs Blvd.

Saturday — 1-3 p.m., Real Life Church, 1055 Blue Starr.

Mondays — 11 a.m.–1 p.m., First United Methodist Church, 1615 N. Hwy. 88.

Tuesdays — 1:30–3:30 p.m., Memorial Heights Baptist Church, 1500 W. Will Rogers Blvd.

Thursdays — 3–5 p.m., St. Cecilia Catholic Church, 1304 N. Dorothy Ave.

One non-profit has teamed up with local churches and organizations to provide food for those in need.

“For us, it is the goal of Mercy Chefs to feed people,” said Lisa Saylor, Mercy Chef Director of disaster relief and long term recovery. “And whatever that looks like that’s what we’ll do.”

Mercy Chefs has scheduled food box distributions in Claremore for multiple times this week.

“We have a semi truck coming filled with food boxes and they're going to be given out to the community,” said Nancy Phelps, Executive Director of Light of Hope.

Phelps said nearly 1,200 food boxes will be available Saturday. More boxes will be available beginning Monday.

Saylor said each food box contains dairy, produce, and a gallon of milk.

Mercy Chefs delivered 593,701 pounds of food — 18,788 boxes — throughout six counties within Oklahoma in the first distribution week from Feb. 2-6.

Saylor said roughly 12,500 of those boxes were distributed in Rogers County.

Saylor lives in Rogers County and wanted to create a program in her community that Mercy Chefs could emulate in other places.

“When we started distribution here in Rogers County we started with two locations,” she said.

Saylor said the distribution became very popular very fast, so to accommodate demand, they moved the distribution to the Expo Center.

“It got too big to handle at the expo,” she said. “It was taking a 14-hour day because we were distributing so many boxes. We were creating a traffic hazard in town.”

Saylor decided to individualize it and schedule it on different days of the week. She reached out to churches to see if they’d like to be a part of it.

Over the past two weeks, Saylor said many of the local distributions had to cancel because of inclement weather.

She began creating pop-up events and would reach out to Light of Hope for help with the distribution.

Light of Hope used to help with the Mercy Chef food distributions when the pandemic started.

Last Saturday, Light of Hope partnered with Cedar Point Church and handed out food boxes in the brutal weather.

“There was no milk to be found anywhere, so luckily we got a truck that had produce, protein, dairy and milk, so it worked out beautifully,” she said.

Phelps said they even did home deliveries to families that they knew wouldn’t be able to make it out.

“It’s been monumental for families,” she said. “Sadly due to the weather situation, some aren’t able to get out. We’ve been limited on supplies at our stores because they’ve been bombarded by everybody. It seems like the food boxes, specially the milk, has been well received.”

A few months ago, Real Life Church reached out to Light of Hope wanting to have an event in February that exemplified loving the community.

“We thought of a few different things to do to provide something wonderful for our community,” Phelps said. “And here we go, we’ve got another opportunity for food distribution.”

“Food is the most human need,” she said.

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