GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – When Coopersville farm and gardening store Let’s Grow Garden Supply reached out to FOX 17 looking to donate hundreds of pounds of organic produce to feed the hungry, they got a quick answer.
Matthew’s House Ministry on Grand Rapids’ West side called the farm last week, and then received a truckload of vegetables the next morning.
Pastor George Werkema started the ministry six years ago; now it’s become a community staple. Among its services, Matthew’s House donates clothing, school supplies, and feeds the hungry Monday through Friday at noon.
Matthew’s House Administrative Assistant Tom Goodrich said he knows what it’s like to be hungry: once homeless himself, he said the ministry saved his life.
“I just thought that I was going to die, that’s it,” said Goodrich.
Goodrich told FOX 17 that he was in shock when Let’s Grow Garden Supply donated such nutrient rich produce.
“This is a busy corner: people were stopping in their cars, people walking by,” said Goodrich. “They look forward to us bringing stuff out for them, and to be able to do that with that kind of a quality produce for them made me feel good. Apparently it probably made them feel good too because they had vitamins they don’t usually get.”
Families took the vegetables home within an hour, and next week, Tom said, Let’s Grow Garden Supply will drop off even more.
“They were always here for me," said Theresa Floyd, a local resident, "and my baby, she really loves the Matthew House. I’ve got four more of them, and they chase after the Matthew House.”
Several people enjoying a warm meal at Matthew’s House shared their stories of overcoming homelessness with the help of Matthew’s House and its countless meals. The ministry said it always accepts donations and is in need of clothes for school uniforms and school supplies, as well as food.