Highland News Leader

Alhambra-Hamel Ministerial Alliance Food pantry looking to expand

Charlie Martin hands Dave Tune a frozen pizza Monday at the Bread of Life food pantry in Hamel.
Charlie Martin hands Dave Tune a frozen pizza Monday at the Bread of Life food pantry in Hamel. News Leader

To keep up with the challenge of feeding the growing number of needy people in in northeastern Madison and southern Macoupin counties, The Bread of Life Food Pantry is trying to raise $7,000 to build a new food pantry.

Since 2012 the number families served by The Bread of Food Life Pantry has grown by 40 percent.

“With the increase in families, it has become necessary to expand our storage space,” Bread of Life director Sharilyn Moehle said.

The current Bread of Life Food Pantry is located on the campus of the New Life Christian Fellowship in Hamel in an overcrowded 12-by-14-foot storage shed.

The pantry has raised $5,000 toward the purchase of a new building, according to Moehle, a member of St. Paul United Church of Christ in Edwardsville.

The pantry is run by the Alhambra-Hamel Ministerial Alliance (AHMA). It serves Alhambra, Hamel, and Worden, plus other small, local communities in northeastern Madison County, and Benld, Mt. Olive and Staunton in southern Macoupin County. The pantry also has clients from Sorento in nearby Bond County.

Member congregations of the alliance, community organizations, and individuals support the pantry with food drives and volunteers.

“We get very good support from this community,” said Charlie Martin said, who has volunteered at the pantry since it first opened in 2006.

But the number of people using the pantry has picked up tremendously in the past two years, Moehle said.

“The pantry used to serve about 20 families a month,” she said.

Volunteer Dave Tune attributed the increase to the economy.

“The economy is great,” Tune quipped sarcastically.

Moehle is thankful for all the people who continue to support the pantry.

The pantry is open every Monday from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. It is closed on holidays and when schools are closed due to weather.

How to donate / volunteer

All donations are considered tax deductible. To make a donation, make a check out to either Bread of Life Food Pantry or AHMA. Write “Building Fund” in the memo line.

Mail all contributions to: AHMA, 1117 W. North St., Alhambra, IL 62001.

If you need help or would like to volunteer, contact Moehle at (618) 633-2413 or Dave Kalish at (618) 656-4828.

For emergency help, contact Martin at (618) 444-6747.