BLAINE, Minn. – (Aug. 13, 2015) – Hope for the Community is based out of Hope Church. They have been working to help meet one of the community’s most basic needs by distributing food for more than five years.
Dr. Alan Goracke, the President of Hope for the Community, explains, “We started in 2010, and it was January, and the first week that we started we didn’t have any coolers, we didn’t even know what the need would be. It was right in the middle of the great recession, and so we put food in snow banks to keep the food cold. And, that week we helped 27 families, about 100 people.”
They started small and then eventually became a 501(c)3. As word got out about what they were doing, more people started coming. More people came for food, and more people came to help. What started as a mission of the church has turned into something much bigger, now with nearly 80 percent of their volunteers coming from outside their congregation.
Goracke says, “In fact, it changed our church so much that we renamed our church. We were Kingswood Church when we started this food shelf, the food shelf is called Hope for the Community, so we decided, you know what let’s bring everything into alignment and change the name of our church to Hope Church. So, everything we do now is about bringing hope. In fact, our tagline is: Everybody needs hope.”
And they keep trying to share that hope with more and more people.
The Blaine non-profit took on a massive project this week. Hope for the Community has been doing a weekly food distribution for years, but this week they made it their goal to feed five thousand people.
Goracke adds, “Normally every week for Hope for the Community we feed about 1,700 or 1,600 people so this is like three times the normal amount of food that we’re going to try to feed in the community. It will be about 1,200 to 1,300 families.”
Not only have the people in the community been lining up to help meet the need, but the city itself is helping too.
“The city of Blaine gave us a grant, like $7,500 grant this past year. And we’re actually just taking that money and we’re investing it back out into the community this week.” Goracke continues, “We have a great mayor, we have a great fire chief, and police chief, and they support us and help us. and, it’s just a great community to live in and we want to give back.”
Hope for the Community distributes food to anyone in needs every Thursday from 2:30 pm to 5 pm. If you need food, they would love to help. They are also always welcoming of more volunteers.
STORY UPDATE, – (Aug. 15, 2015)
Hope for the Community didn’t quite reach their goal, they were still able to feed 3,175 people from 1,032 different families. They distributed 52,632 pounds of food during the day.