Cheryl Tannery, who raised three sons as a single mom, is one of thousands of people in the Lubbock area who have struggled with poverty and hunger. Mission Lubbock addresses their needs with the provision of food, clothing, and household necessities.
“Baptists need to understand that there are people going to bed at night without food,” said Judy Cooper, director of Mission Lubbock and multi-housing coordinator for the Lubbock Area Baptist Association. “There are children who are leaving school on Friday and not having another meal until Monday when they get back to school.”
When Cooper started Mission Lubbock two years ago, her focus was to provide clothing and other household items. Soon she discovered the prevalence of a more basic need: food. “We realized that so many of the people we were trying to minister to had nothing,” Cooper said.
Cheryl Tannery came to Mission Lubbock looking for food. Meeting Tannery’s immediate needs provided Cooper and other volunteers the opportunity to love, encourage, and pray for her. Tannery, who cleans homes for a living, said the volunteers and ministry of Mission Lubbock made such an impact on her life that she now volunteers her time the two days a week the ministry is open. “They are like my second family,” Tannery said. “They are about helping people and doing God’s work.”
During the past year, Mission Lubbock distributed 556 food boxes and assisted more than 1,000 families. “I feel certain that we will surpass that this year with still being open just two days a week,” Cooper said. “We would like to extend our hours, but we have got to find some funding.”
Nearly 60 percent of children in the Lubbock Independent School District are considered impoverished and are on the free or reduced lunch program. Cooper reports, “Lubbock does have quite a bit of poverty , . . the working poor. They have jobs. They just don’t get paid enough to make ends meet.”
Giving the cost of one meal once a month makes an enormous difference in the lives of hungry people.