Local nonprofits help those in need, especially during the holiday season
By Caitlin Boland

Maxine Story, Tamesha Bradshaw and Pauline Dixon pack Thanksgiving boxes for Agape clients.
With the holiday season fast approaching, Agape Outreach Ministries and MANNA are working hard to provide individuals and families in the community with what they need to enjoy the season.
Agape is a 501(3) nonprofit ministry that helps the less fortunate in the area with items such as clothing, food, household items, toys, furniture, job training, specialized counseling and other services for the elderly.
"Agape means God's unconditional love," said Agape Assistant Director Pauline Dixon. "We help people no matter what with no judgement."
The ministry is currently taking donations of Thanksgiving foods such as turkey, ham, dressing, cranberry sauce and other side items. Dixon said Agape assists more than 700 people for Thanksgiving and will help approximately 1,700 people in November. She added that Agape serves 5,000 families in a year and 15,000 individuals.
People who are seeking assistance have to go through the application process and go through an interview with the all-volunteer staff.
Agape can be reached via phone at 706-597-8800. The ministry is open Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Meeting Area Needs Now and Always (MANNA) is also a nonprofit in McDuffie County that serves the needy in McDuffie and Warren counties only. However, they do not provide financial assistance to any their clients.
MANNA's main purpose is to serve as a food pantry, but it does provide furniture, appliances and clothing as it is available, according to the Rev. Steve Stokes, the executive director. The organization is supported by area churches as well as several individuals and businesses.
Stokes said clients must live in McDuffie or Warren County, meet the USDA income requirements and be able to verify their identity (drivers license and/or social security card) and where they live as well as who is in their family (i.e. children).
Stokes said clients can come once a month to receive food, and the amount is based on how many people are in the household. He added that in 2016, MANNA served 730 different families.
During the holiday season, Stokes said ongoing clients will receive an extra bag of food for Thanksgiving, and for families with children under the age of 12, applications are available every other year for Christmas gifts.
"Churches partner with us to buy the gifts for the families," Stokes said. "Last year, I believe we were able to help 21 families."
MANNA is located at 421 E. Hill Street in Thomson and is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. They can be contacted via phone at 706-595-3138 and by email at mcduffiemanna@gmail.com.
FOR ADDITIONAL DETAILS, see the full story in the Nov. 16, 2017 issue of The McDuffie Progress. To have The McDuffie Progress delivered to your home or business each week, simply call 706-595-1601 to subscribe. Or, follow the link on our home page to subscribe.





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