All Hands On Deck in Macon County

Macon County Pop-Up Market Sees Large Attendance to Fill Basic Needs

Macon County Community Members Come Together for their Neighbors

Macon County communities came together at the end of September to help provide much-needed basic necessities to residents struggling with tight budgets, health issues, and other financially restrictive situations, thanks to strong community partnerships and dedicated volunteers.

The Macon Program for Progress (MPP) and the Robert C. Carpenter Community Building hosted a MANNA FoodBank pop-up market, where more than 500 people representing 187 households were able to pick up a wide variety of food available for free to families struggling to afford groceries.

In total, this free community market provided over 14,000 pounds of food, including 6,482 pounds of fresh produce to support Macon County residents.

Community volunteers came out to help support the pop-up market in September

Felicia Roberts with MPP, noted that the monthly distribution has grown, and this last event served a record number of community members.

“I saw many new faces that I hadn’t seen before,” Roberts said, “and as people were exiting, they were so thankful and appreciative.” There main concern, she goes to on say, is that there will be more events like this. “They depend on this,” Roberts said, highlighting the ongoing need for food and other basic support in Macon County.

“There was a large diversity of people who attended this pop-up,” says Amy Sims, Agency Relations Assistant Manager for MANNA FoodBank. “People of all backgrounds and races, families with kids, seniors, working families—there are many people experiencing a tough situation right now, particularly in Macon County.”

North Carolina ranks at the top of the list of states with high food insecurity rates, according to the USDA, and western North Carolina counties are particularly at risk: 1 in 6 people—and even more staggering, 1 in 4 children—is currently living life without knowing where they will get their next meal.

MANNA Pop-Up Markets: Partnering with Local Communities to Alleviate Hunger

A record number of Macon County residents attended the pop-up market to access food resources.

The Macon County pop-up market is one example of the incredible work happening across WNC in order to serve our neighbors struggling with a budget that doesn’t provide for their basic needs. With the support of our local community partners who host these pop-up markets, we are getting more food into the hands of people who truly need it, every week.

Since we began pop-up markets in the summer of 2018, we have partnered with local communities to host 133 markets, resulting in over 400,000 pounds of food distributed directly to our neighbors and their families who don’t know where their next meal will come from.

It takes many hands to make this work happen: volunteers at MANNA, who dedicate their time and energy; food donors, who donate their product to help fill plates; and you, our community of supporters, who give of your time, your energy, and your voice to help make life a bit easier for the more than 100,000 people facing hunger right here at home in WNC every year.

MANNA’s commitment to reaching our neighbors who desperately need food is unwavering, and as we move into the holiday season, we will continue to stretch every available resource to serve our community with this most basic necessity, thanks to you.