Everyone is feeling the pinch of these tough economic times, especially food banks. In an effort to help these charities, the Fifth Third Foundation awarded Feed America West Michigan Food Bank a grant to distribute 50,000 pounds of food to needy people in Kent, Ottawa, Muskegon, Ionia, Allegan, and Montcalm counties. On Monday, November 16, volunteers from Fifth Third Bank worked in partnership with St Stephen Evangelical Lutheran to deliver 5,000 pounds of food using Feed America’s mobile food pantry. This food will help replenish the church’s resources and reduce food cost for needy families. “With Fifth Third’s help in providing both funding and volunteers, together we were able to deliver at least 50 pounds of food each to more than 160 families yesterday; families that are our friends and neighbors throughout the Rockford and North Kent County area,” said Jerry Field, Director of Missional Life at St. Stephen Lutheran Church. “At an average family size of three to four people, this means that we were able to positively impact the lives of 500 to 600 persons in need.” Michigan families, especially children, are facing a difficult holiday season. In Michigan, 11.8 percent of Michigan residents we are facing food insecurity, 16.2 percent are children. Food banks like St. Stephen’s offer families an opportunity to augment their growing needs. St. Stephen Lutheran holds this event the third Monday of each month, year-round. If you are interested in volunteering to help St. Stephen Lutheran’s food pantry, please visit: www.sselc.org, or to learn more about the Feed America, visit: http://feedingamerica.org.