What kind of shopper are you? Do you shop the sales and organize a list by your planned menu? Do you buy toiletries at Walmart or the Dollar store? Do you have to consider your budget?
Unfortunately, with the COVID-19 threatening the ability to work, everyone is concerned.
But for people living on a fixed income, the escalating price of food and buying toiletries is a constant problem for many people in the community…retirees, single parents and others who depend on Food Stamps and other assistance programs. Because hygiene products are not food-stamp eligible, toiletries are often expensive for many people living marginally or on a fixed income.
Recently a group of First United Methodist Church members have stepped into the gap. Jeff and Susan Floyd found a way to help.
“My wife and I were motivated to help because we knew of a successful similar collection from another church, Highland Park Methodist in Dallas,” he said.
During Covid isolation, they felt a nudge from God encouraging them to help.
“Little did we know but we each felt a nudge to help our Marshall neighbors with this kind of collection,” Floyd said.
“My mom, Dot Floyd, was very involved in Mission Marshall, known then as the food pantry. She taught us that giving back to those in need was the right thing to do. Therefore, when we learned of the personal care need in our community, it was natural to step up and do the right thing.
“We reached out to our Sunday school class at FUMC here in Marshall to join with us in securing donations of toiletry items,” he said.
“The response was overwhelming.” Friends said yes to helping and church members and friends donated funds that were used to purchase toiletries.
He contacted Mission Marshall and they agreed to store and dispense the toiletries through their organization. Covenant classmates worked June 27 to organize and pack the 3000-plus toiletry items donated. Other class members transferred the items to Mission Marshall.
Before the morning began, Covenant Class members gathered in prayer because it has been weeks since they have been together. It was good to be in church, doing God’s work.
“It was wonderful to see and work with my class members. We have supported Mission Marshall in various ways over the years, so when Jeff and Susan suggested we tackle this, all of us agreed that it was a great idea,” Classmate Sandra Herring said.
Floyd said that when he talked to Mission Marshall Assistant Director Darlene Dotson, he learned that people living marginally often sacrifice medicine and personal sanitary care for food.
“I hope these items bring a sense of self-worth to the families. Every family deserves that sense of dignity,” Floyd said.