#RichlandGives Spotlight: Matthew 25 - Richland County Foundation

#RichlandGives Spotlight: Matthew 25 Outreach Center

November 2, 2017

Matthew 25 Outreach Center is a rapidly growing non-profit organization based in Mansfield. M25OC is a 100% volunteer operated organization that is blessed to be a part of a collaboration of people from more than 20 churches, several local businesses, local schools and many civic organizations.  We know that working together as a community helps us to accomplish far more than any one group could do alone.  We also know the importance of staying in our lane and supporting other organizations who offer various services.  So, what does M25OC actually do?

Matthew 25 Outreach Center seeks to open hearts by our mission of “working together to meet needs and build relationships.”  The avenue that helps us meet needs and build relationships is fresh, wholesome, free food.  With numbers increasing each month, our most recent event touched over 1,500 lives with our free produce distribution.  Produce distributions are conducted monthly in conjunction with Mansfield City Schools and distribute over 25,000 lbs. of fresh fruit and vegetables to the community – both through walk-up service and through home delivery service.  In addition, we are adding Senior Boxes to our services in order to touch more lives.  Senior boxes (currently 40 per month) offer approximately 40 lbs. of shelf-stable food products each month to individuals over 60 years of age. 

While we offer year-round services, we know we can do more.  Our next step will be to begin reclaiming food from local retailers for local redistribution.  That will be a monumental task to complete requiring vehicles, daily pickups, a building for storage, and scheduling delivery of food.  However, connecting with people is our passion, and feeding them follows close behind, so no task is too large!  Touching that many people each month takes the hard work and dedication of over 300 volunteers who help to share food, stories, and a big helping of dignity with those we serve.

Being a part of Richland Gives is an opportunity to grow our connections in the community and to streamline and increase our services to meet the short-term needs of the community.  Currently, our organization is itself homeless.  We have no permanent location, and yet we grow in reach each month!  Our goal is to build healthy relationships all across the community, partnering whenever possible, while seeking out a permanent home where we can add our food reclaiming and distribution services.  It will take a large chunk of money to get us to that point – funding a building, a pick-up, and delivery vehicle, and start-up operating costs.  We look forward to the opportunities presented through Richland Gives as a way to share our story and the stories of those we serve so that we can support the community that we call home. 

Learn more about our organization and the people we love to serve at www.m25oc.org  Be sure to check out our “Stories” section to learn the heart of who we are as an organization of caring volunteers.

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