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Labor of love needs more laborers

5:35 PM, Nov 12, 2012   |    comments
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The Love Kitchen is a labor of love for two sisters here in Knoxville.

They need more laborers to help feed the hungry in our community.

Volunteers prepare about 1,200 meals every Thursday at the Love Kitchen.

Sisters Helen Ashe and Ellen Turner started the hunger outreach 25 years ago.

"They realized there were people out there who need home delivery of food and it's not contingent upon age. A lot of the organizations you have to be at least 60 but that's not the case here. We have younger people who get food," Volunteer Delivery Coordinator Jean Alexander said.

She coordinates the delivery of those 1,200 meals, sending volunteer drivers like Sally Scott and Mary Bond Holt on 28 routes across Knoxville.

"They knock on the door and they give somebody a stack of food like this. This is seven meals already prepared. And those seven meals are meant to last somebody a whole week," she said.

One afternoon a week, the driver teams spend about an hour delivering meals to the homebound and disabled.

Mary Bond Holt started volunteering eight years ago.

"We love our people. In eight years you get to know them fairly well," she said.

One of their regular stops is at the home of Mary Whitt and her son Michael Wright who has had brain surgery.

"They said I would never walk or talk again and because of God's grace and it's a miracle I'm alive and I'm here to help my mom," Michael Wright said.

He greets his Love Kitchen volunteers each week with a memorized Bible verse. This time it's Romans 13:10.

"Love works no ill to his neighbor therefore love is the fulfillment of the law," he said.

Home meal delivery is a labor of love and more laborers are needed.

Jean Alexander said, "For drivers, I need a consistent pool of substitutes who I can call when my regular drivers have to be out. And right now with the holidays coming up it's going to be more urgent."

Mary Bond Holt said, "For a driver it is good to have continuity so if you know your schedule is such that you can' t do it every week, if you could have two teams that could work together so that when one is not there then the other could take over."

Two sisters started the ministry and volunteers make sure it continues.

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