Be One, Bless One

Food program a blessing for many
By Shelby Harrell, Staff Writer | Jul 28, 2014
Photo by: Rachel Robles Carolyn Gratton collects a food box she ordered from Be One Bless One with help from co-founder Don Chamberlain.

The founders of Be One Bless One believe that when someone is blessed, they should be a blessing and when someone is a blessing, one will be blessed.

Be One Bless One is an organization that allows families and individuals to order boxes of frozen and fresh food in large quantities at affordable prices.

The mission of Be One Bless One is to enable hard working individuals to be a blessing to friends and neighbors by helping them overcome any physical pang of hunger and open to them the love and hope of God.

The program is open to everyone, young or old, rich or poor, and its primary target is families with children, single parents, and the elderly. In addition, the program aims to help those who are trying to get ahead, but can’t quite stretch that food dollar to the end of the month and do not qualify for government assistance.

“We’re trying to help the people who are falling through the cracks,” said program co-founder Don Chamberlain. “With the program, we help you save money and then you help someone you know. People buy a box and it makes a difference in their home, so they find someone to bless and then they buy a box to bless them.”

The goals of Be One Bless One are to educate the public of the “Stretch Your Food Dollar Program,” to enable families, seniors, and all individuals to take ownership of their monthly food spend, and to help them gain economic independence in food matters. The program also encourages individuals by networking, affiliating, and working with like-minded people in Haywood County to spread the message that “We do care and there is hope.”

Just last year, Don and his wife, Christine, discovered that a previous food box program had discontinued operations in the county and they saw a there was still a need for it.

“A lot of people were caught in the middle of this,” Christine said. “They were trying to make ends meet while food costs were going up. This is an avenue to help them get over that hump and make it a little easier for them.”

The couple did their homework, made contacts, confirmed a need for the service, and then organized and started Be One Bless One.

Orders and payment for the food boxes are turned in monthly, usually the second Wednesday of the month. Then the orders are picked up in South Carolina the third Saturday of the month and brought to the distribution site, which is Life Church, located at 601 Westwood Circle, Waynesville.

Since the program began last December, Be One Bless One has sold 162 boxes of food, and spent approximately $11,05, which has resulted in family consumers saving an estimated $5,450.

“I know that we have about 40 families that we have made a difference in their lives,” Christine said.

The program also promotes gleaning with the Haywood County Gleaners program that is in coordination with the Society of St. Andrew. Working with Haywood County Gleaners enables individuals to volunteer to help put food in a local food pantry and in doing so take home some fresh produce for them selves.

The Be One Bless One menu varies from month to month and features a variety of frozen meats, vegetables and individualized single-serving meals called “express meals.” Each box ranges in price from $16.50 to $46.

There are 11 pre-packaged food boxes for sale, including the Family box, the More Than Enough box, the Golden Cusine Express Meals box, the Frozen/Fresh Veggie box, the Pork Chop Special box, the Premium Grilling Special box, the Hamburger Special box, the Kids box, the Boneless/Skinless Chicken Special box, the Popcorn Chicken box and the St. Louis Spare Ribs box.

For the month of July, the Family box — which costs $37.50 — included ground beef, sausage, deli meat, hamburgers, beef shoulder tenderloin, breaded chicken sandwich patties, frozen fish, a 38-ounce frozen meat and cheese lasagna in addition to several vegetables and carbohydrates. This month’s boxes were distributed to families last weekend.

“Sometimes people have to make the decision about whether they are going to pay the electric bill or whether they’re going to eat,” Christine said. “Knowing that we make a difference in people’s life has been a blessing. People in the community need to know that there are people out there who really care — and there is hope.”

The program currently does not accept EBT cards and there is no limit to how much food can be ordered. Anyone is welcome to place an order.

To place an order, call 817-545-4242 or email beoneblessone@mindspring.com. For more information, visit www.beoneblessone.org.

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