The Roundup -

Fellowship Food Pantry Helping Those In Need

 

January 16, 2019 | View PDF

Sidney residents, Jeff Tibbets with his two sons, Andrew (left) and Hunter (right) volunteer at the Fellowship Food Pantry.

Since 2008, the congregation of Fellowship Baptist Church in Sidney, Montana has been helping those in need of food through the Fellowship Food Pantry. Now, the people and businesses of Sidney and the surrounding area are helping them.

Last December Town Pump Charitable Foundation, Town Pump Corporate Fund, and the Bridger Lounge Corporation, through Town Pump's match donation program, donated $3,300 to Fellowship Food Pantry for purchasing subsidized food products from the Montana Food Bank. The money went for helping those in need of food but in an indirect way assisted the church as well. Fellowship Food Pantry is usually staffed, paid for and supplied by the congregation of Fellowship Baptist Church. Fellowship Food Pantry is partnered with Montana Food Bank. Montana Food Bank is a non-profit organization out of Missoula that partners with neighborhood food banks, community pantries, social organizations, homeless shelters, schools, and hundreds of other organizations that are all working together to end hunger in Montana according to their website, https://mfbn.org. Through the partnership, the Food Pantry receives bulk donations of free dry goods, fresh produce, and frozen meats, and has the opportunity to purchase very low-cost food products. Every six weeks they have to purchase food products that were needed but not donated from the Montana Food Bank. The food pantry receives financial support from what the congregation gives in tithes and offerings that is budgeted for the purchases.

Also in December, the students and Staff of Lambert School donated 500 lbs of food to Fellowship Food Pantry. It was part of their Do – Good December Drive from December 17 through the 21. Principal Kara Hansen Triplett told me that students and staff were encouraged to bring in food, new socks, or pairs of shoes. They got to make an ornament to hang on the school's caring tree outside the Main Office, and then took the ornament home before Christmas break. The Student Council gave away a soda or water to those who contributed. According to their Facebook page, the drive was done to invite their students and staff to consider ways to spread holiday cheer.

Several other businesses and organizations have assisted and donated to Fellowship Food Pantry over the last year. Wood Group, previously Mitchell's Oil Field Service, allows the Montana Food Bank to make Fellowship Food Pantry's drop on their property and loads the pallets to be taken to the church. The Pantry has received additional support from the Friends of Reynolds program at Reynold's Market, the Foundation for Community Care for outreach work, and the Lower Yellowstone REC's Operation Roundup program to purchase a new freezer; and has received donations of food from the Brorson Farmhands 4H group, Richland County Health Department staff, and many, many others.

Fellowship Food Pantry gives thousands of pounds of foods each year to families unexpectedly in need, or experiencing chronic food insecurity. Just from July to November in 2018 they helped 306 individual families with 6,607 lbs of food. They will take food donations from individuals outside the church but do not solicit for them. Pastor Jordan Hall told me, "We understand there is another food bank in town that needs donations." He also told me that they have a Friends of Reynolds account and if individuals wish to donate they can simply give the cashier the number 2015 at checkout when shopping at Sidney's Reynolds Market and a percentage of the purchase will be donated to the food pantry.

Fellowship Food Pantry is part of Fellowship Baptist Church and is located at 2181 W. Holly St. in Sidney, Montana. Those who wish to receive food must call the church at 406-433-4004 to make an appointment.

 

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