Hearts & Hands Food Pantry helps families in need
The Hearts & Hands Food Pantry started as a small group of members of Axe United Methodist Church that collected food for people in need. The food was bagged and handed out by the church secretary to those that asked for help.
As the depth of need became increasingly obvious, a small group began to pray about the situation and they were led to start The Little Food Pantry. Their motto was “We think we can.” They had no money, very few volunteers and no space.
The determined few continued, received a few donations and the food pantry was opened. Whatever they collected, they passed on to those in need. The food always ran out before everyone in need received anything, but they continued to work hard and pray.
Other church members began to help and food donations, along with monetary assistance, began to come in. In addition, the group received a grant from the city of Garland and became able to help more and more people. Space was created, shelves were built and refrigerators were donated, which allowed the group to open the facility more days and more hours.
The North Texas Food Bank then decided that the people in the 75041 ZIP code needed a food pantry and The Little Food Pantry became an official location. Since then, a new storeroom has been built and donations have increased even more so that they are able to help all who come through their doors and save a little back for the next week as well.
The Little Food Pantry is now known as Hearts & Hands Food Pantry and is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. They serve approximately 20 client families who meet NTFB guidelines as well as approximately 120 families that shop from the fresh produce and food they have to give away at no charge.
Hearts & Hands Food Pantry is located at Axe Memorial United Methodist Church, 1700 West Kingsley Road in Garland. Their primary focus is to help families in the 75041 ZIP code but they help everyone who asks for assistance.
They have food boxes for qualified clients, which means that they meet the NTFB and city of Garland qualifications. They also have fresh fruit, vegetables and meat for everyone who comes in.
Hearts & Hands receives donations from Axe Memorial UMC members, the city of Garland, Orchard Hills Baptist Church, Southside Assembly of God Church, Lucky Dog Books, Mayberry Gardens, Girls Scouts, Boy Scouts and the USPS. They also pick up food from Walmart and a bread distributor twice a week.
They give free books, courtesy of Half Price Books, to children and they share books with Good Samaritans of Garland, Friendship House and the New Beginning Center.
There are currently eight volunteers that have, at some point, been clients of the organization.