Missions Pastor Tyler Fuller said they hoped to feed more than 400 families with the 15,000 pounds of food distributed.
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Volunteers distributed a total of 30,000 pounds of food to families at two events Friday at Crosspoint Church in Niceville and Choctawhatchee High School in Fort Walton Beach.
Volunteers at Crosspoint Church spent the morning directing drivers and loading groceries into vehicle trunks and back seats. Missions Pastor Tyler Fuller said they hoped to feed more than 400 families with the 15,000 pounds of food distributed.
"We think it’s something we are called to do, that we can do well and do safely to serve our community in the name of Jesus, so we’re proud to do that," Fuller said.
It was the third food distribution for Crosspoint Church and the second one at its Niceville location. Volunteers distributed 10,000 pounds of food April 17 at the church’s north Crestview campus.
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Meghan Rice Gordon, culinary director with Crosspoint Church, said she’s seen a rise in the number of families seeking assistance since the church started the distributions.
"At the first Niceville one (distribution) we had just enough food," Gordon said. But at the Crestview event she said "there were probably 100 cars that they had to turn away."
Crosspoint Church has another food distribution planned for its north Crestview campus for Friday, May 8 from 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m. The address is 6268 Old Bethel Road.
At Choctaw, volunteers in masks and gloves placed groceries in the vehicles as they moved through a line that snaked through orange traffic cones set up in the parking lot and disappeared around the back of the school.
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"We’ve got in about 15,000 pounds of food, and we’re anticipating being able to serve close to 450 families," said Brittnee Orr, director of community impact and engagement with the United Way Emerald Coast, which organized the event.
The United Way is also partnering with the city of Crestview to distribute about 80,000 pounds of food at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Crestview Community Center at 1446 Commerce Drive.
Orr said she sees a real need in the community for food distributions. As an example, Orr mentioned that the first person in line Friday arrived at 6:30 a.m. When a sheriff’s deputy setting up cones in the parking lot told him that event didn’t start until noon, his response was "I’ll wait."