At NourishMKE, approximately one third of our volunteers have current or past experience with food insecurity. It’s often through their eyes that the deepest impact is felt – everyone who comes to NourishMKE has something to give and receive. 

This is Michael’s story:

He’s s third-generation preacher who looks at himself every morning in the mirror and asks, “How do you want someone to judge you today”. Then, he shows up to volunteer at NourishMKE. His goal? To treat everyone with kindness. Michael speaks passionately about the children he sees, reflecting on his own childhood. “No kid should go hungry in a culture where we throw food out every day”. He tells the story of a lady with kids and no place to go, who showed up at NourishMKE, hungry and without hope. He says he’s “always volunteered”, an example set by his father, and he knew just what to do. Michael will make you cry when he tells the story of connecting her with a friend who owns a hotel and in a moment this woman’s housing crisis was over, giving her time to get back on her feet.

“Magical” – that’s how Michael describes NourishMKE. He says the staff and volunteers are the “best people” he’s worked with. He talks about our food pantries as true places of respite where community members will pull you aside and tell of their struggles. In one magical moment of kindness and dignity, burdens are lifted, and hope offered. Over a chess board, players commiserate in community where people offer care and help each other. “There’s no shame here,” Michael remarks, “Everyone is treated as a human being”.

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