Supermarket Sweep Offers Opportunity to Help Those in Need

Grace College students and Prof. Mike Yocum (far right) get in the holiday spirit by purchasing groceries for those in need at Supermarket Sweep.

Grace College & Seminary is partnering with Mission Point Community Church to sponsor the seventh-annual Supermarket Sweep on Wednesday, Nov. 8, at Owen’s Market in Warsaw. The community is invited to participate; grocery lists will be available for the public from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

As the holidays approach, Supermarket Sweep is fun and easy way to help community members who need food and other groceries. Shoppers purchase non-perishable food and baby products which are then packed and donated to local non-profit organizations which distribute the products to people in need. These organizations include the Salvation Army, Combined Community Services, Our Father’s House and Heartline Pregnancy Center.

According to Ken Locke, community ministries director at the Salvation Army in Warsaw, Supermarket Sweep is crucial to providing needed food for the community through the winter.  “Our pantry is pretty well depleted at this time of the year.  Supermarket Sweep is a big boost for us – in fact, it’s one of two main events that we rely on each year to stock our shelves so that we can distribute food to those who need it,” Locke said.

“This event celebrates service,” said Kearstin Criswell, director of student involvement at Grace College. “Beyond filling the food pantry shelves, Supermarket Sweep is a time for the community to support our own. Generosity and service can really unite us!”

Families are encouraged to participate. “It’s a great event for kids,” said Criswell. “You can buy a bag of groceries or fill an entire cart then leave it at the store for us to deliver. If you don’t have time to shop, you can donate money or gift cards that we will use to purchase items from the list.”

Last year’s Supermarket Sweep resulted in $26,000 worth of food and products provided to men, women and children in need in our community.  With the help of neighbors and friends, Grace College and Mission Point hope to provide even more this year.  “If many people are willing to give just an hour of their time to shop or a small monetary donation for others to shop with, we can make a big difference for a lot of families,” Criswell concluded.

Another opportunity to support the community is coming next month.  Grace College students welcome the public to Night Market on Friday, Dec. 8, from 2 – 8 p.m. in the Winona Heritage Room, 901 Park Ave, Winona Lake. This alternative Christmas shopping experience offers an assortment of unique, handmade gifts from local vendors who share their proceeds with a variety of causes.  More information is coming soon.

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