Local author to help food ministry

Published 7:00 am Friday, March 6, 2015

For more than four years, numerous churches and organizations in Picayune have been feeding hungry children in the area.
It’s called the Picayune Bac Pac Ministry and soon local author Mary Beth Magee will join forces with the group to raise funds for the program.
Each week, members of Bac Pac fill a backpack with non-perishable food items to be sent home with disadvantaged students.
“There are some students who only get to eat when they are in school,” coordinator Judy Byrd said. “We work with the schools and teachers to determine which students might need meals for the weekend.”
Each backpack is filled with enough food for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks during the weekend, Byrd said. The ministry currently serves about 168 students a week at Roseland Park Elementary, Westside Elementary and Nicholson Elementary.
Everything is handled anonymously and the ministry does not know who receives the backpacks, Byrd said.
“This is an extremely needed program,” Byrd said. “It provides a way to help the children that need our help.”
Recently, Magee’s short story “A Book for Mama” was published in “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Thanks to My Mom,” which is the latest volume to be released on March 17.
“I heard Judy talk about the program in church one day and thought that it would be a good fundraiser,” Magee said. “For the month of March, I will be taking preorders for the book. The retail price is $14.95. All proceeds will be donated to the Bac Pac Ministry. There are children in our area that are hungry and that’s not good. They need their food and nutrition.”
This Saturday, Magee will be at the Pearl River County Welcome Center on I-59 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. celebrating arts in literary month.
“I will have information regarding the Bac Pac ministries and how to preorder copies of the book,” Magee said. “People can also email me at chickensoupbackpack@lol4.net to order a copy of the book.”
Bac Pac Ministries is housed at the First United Methodist Church in Picayune, Byrd said.
Donations to the group can be mailed to the church at 323 N. Haugh Ave., Picayune, MS 39466. For more information, contact church staff at 601-798-4321.
Learn more about Bac Pac by visiting the Facebook page at Bac-Pac Ministry.

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