WIGGINS, MS (WLOX) - Volunteers at a Wiggins food pantry born out of the devastation of Hurricane Katrina say it's faith that has kept the doors open all these years.
That's why on Thursday, Our Daily Bread Food Pantry celebrated its 10th anniversary with a ceremony.
For every volunteer there's a different story of what inspired them feed the hungry of Stone County. Some know what it's like to go without, and some wanted to help others as a way to get their minds off their own troubles.
"In 2008 my husband was killed, a sudden accident at home. I was just on the edge of falling apart.The food pantry kept me together," said Karen Parker-Newton.
Holding it all together financially for the past decade hasn't been easy, especially since the pantry doesn't accept government funding and relies solely on local donations. Volunteers say even during the bleakest times, they kept the faith.
"It has meant to us how God provides what is needed when we need it," said Barbara Evans, director. "Along the way we thought, 'How are we going to do?' Individuals, churches, schools...have just been tremendous support, always."
The pantry supports an average of 260 families each month. Volunteers say most of them need physical and spiritual nourishment.
"Seeing all the different seeing people are having to endure and try to rise above is just amazing," said Parker-Newton. "I have actually talked with some people who have thought of committing suicide and have said 'you people give us hope.'
Our Daily Bread Food Pantry is open from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.