East Charlotte Non-Profits Providing Meals For Thousands of People

CHARLOTTE, NC – Hundreds of families in their cars lined up outside of Galilee Ministries center in East Charlotte. A common scene each Tuesday since the pandemic began. Meals are prepared by volunteers who are mostly furloughed, restaurant workers.

The demand for services from the non-profit organizations at the center has spiked.

“There is some magic that happens in this place,” said Toni Hagerman.

She is the Executive Director of Galilee Ministries. She says nine non-profits, including Loaves and Fishes, operate out of their building, rent-free.

“Our whole motivation is building community,” said Hagerman. 

She says about 1200 meals will be served Tuesday, which is about as many as were served in all of January. 

“Very Hectic. Very busy,” said Lynn Lewis. 

Lewis is the Loaves and Fishes East Charlotte coordinator. 

“We start actually serving food at two o’clock and we are just swamped. One car after the next” explained Lewis. 

Registered families can pick up fresh groceries, canned food, meats, fruit, and prepared meals. 

“As long as the need is there, we’re going to be here,” said Jonathan Lee. 

He is one of the people cooking. Lee is a furloughed restaurant worker and writer for the Charlotte Knights. He’s now donating his service and time. 

“This is a good way to spend a couple of hours every day,” said Lee. 

People in the community helping their neighbors. Providing some positivity during the pandemic. 

“What gives me hope are all these people who, you know, they could sit home and watch Netflix, but they are here cooking for their neighbors,” said Hagerman.