MARION, Ill (WSIL) -- A small church in Marion is hoping to make a big difference this holiday season, with three, drive-through food giveaways.
Refuge Temple Church, on W. Main Street, is providing 1,000 boxes of food, each Monday, between now and Christmas. Organizers say they continue to see an increased need for "food relief" in the region.
"People are not working now, some ministries haven't been back in their church since February, people have been off jobs, the money, unemployment is running out," explains pastor Larry Lee.
Lee is a member of Ministerial Alliance in Marion, which helps feed residents every day. He says at the church, past giveaways have grown with cars lining up hours before the distributions were set to begin.
"When you see a need you try to supply a need," says Lee. "We don't call it like, 'We're trying to feed the hungry,' it's just a need, it's food relief."
Pastor Lee adds, the distribution is a community effort with volunteers from Bob Stotlar Building Center and support from the City of Marion. For those wishing to help, volunteers are asked to arrive at 1 p.m. to prepare for the distribution.
Before Thanksgiving, the church received 50 turkeys to handout. Lee says it was not a contest, just the limited number available went to the first 50 cars. He says the church welcomes another opportunity to provide turkeys for Christmas.
With only three more giveaways left, Lee says he is working on finding a way to continue helping to fill the need of food relief for the community.
The food giveaway is open to anyone in need and is set to start around 3 Monday afternoons: December 7th, 14th, and 21st.