WESTPORT – The Westport Christian Church (WCC) hosted the Gleaners Food Bank Mobile Pantry Wednesday, feeding many hungry people in Decatur County, as well as several in surrounding counties.
According to Gleaners Food Bank, one in six Hoosiers struggles with hunger. To many that number may seem shockingly high, but the need among low income families has been growing exponentially. This is seen in many area, but one can truly see the scope of the problem locally when attending event that offer free assistance to those who need it. Nearly 70 percent of Decatur County students receive free or reduced lunch, proving that many local families are struggling with providing enough food.
Originally, it was planned for the Gleaners truck to park at the church and to serve people from there, but the extreme cold and wind forced organizers to find another location more protected from the weather. WCC preacher Mike Bartlett went to a Kiwanis meeting to ask for volunteers and got more than he expected. Mark Koors, the owner of Globe Asphalt Paving Inc., offered to donate the use of his company’s warehouse just outside of Westport.
The Gleaners truck was parked inside and the people receiving food were able to do so in the comfort of a warm building because of Koors’ generosity. Koors said he would be open to the possibility of letting WCC use the building again in February for the next mobile pantry event if the weather should turn unpleasant.
When asked why he chose to donate the use of his building to the church, Koors said, “Our business is a service business. We don’t exist without customers. This is good PR for us and what Mike and the church are doing is a great thing. We’re both in the same business- taking care of people.”