Jackson’s Blessing Boxes are a new way to help those in need

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Brandon Shields, Jackson Solar
Printed 10:00 p.m. CT Sept. 4, 2020

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On this time of a world pandemic and the slowdown of the financial system, Allison Shipp was trying to do one thing to assist those that may want it.

“I used to be studying an article again within the spring when every part began shutting down and we had been advised to remain house as a lot as attainable about how many individuals had been scared to get out and needed to remain in,” Shipp mentioned. “And I learn an article about how folks had been serving to in a city someplace with meals packing containers, just like the free little libraries we’ve round city right here.

“I believed we wanted to do it, and I attempted to determine who it might be to do it. And I felt that tugging that a few of us really feel at occasions that somebody ought to do it and that somebody was me.”

Shipp began the Give Again Jack group on Fb to attempt to spherical up help and get extra folks concerned, and other people responded.

“I needed to do one thing for individuals who wanted assist with meals however had by no means been to a meals financial institution or knew what else to do,” Shipp mentioned.

So as an alternative of occupying all of the little libraries on the town, Shipp needed to see about getting packing containers to be positioned round city constructed. She put a message on Fb about getting assist, and that message was answered.

“I went via Management Jackson with Brandi Stutsman at The Chamber, and the largest factor they educate you is utilizing your assets,” Shipp mentioned. “And I discovered I had extra assets for use than I spotted earlier than I requested.”

Shipp credited a connection via pals at Lowe’s House Enchancment that garnered donated supplies from the placement on Vann Drive to have six picket cupboards constructed and painted that might be within the climate and retailer meals for these in want.

“We name them Blessing Containers, and the thought behind them is when you’re in want, go to a field and get what you want out,” Shipp mentioned. “And if you’ll be able to donate to a field, please donate.

“And we’ve acquired kids donating to them as service tasks, and we’ve acquired others donating a few cans, apologizing for it as if that’s not sufficient. We don’t care how massive or how small a donation is. In case you’re being beneficiant and serving to somebody in want, we’re grateful to you — particularly in September because it’s Hunger Action Month.”

As soon as the supplies had been donated, Shipp nonetheless had the issue of determining methods to get them constructed.

“I promise you I can’t construct a cupboard,” Shipp mentioned. “However I had folks step up prepared to construct and paint, and every part got here collectively.

“I might need began this dialog and acquired folks related, however I’m a really small a part of this as a result of different folks have performed all of the work.”

The hassle began with six Blessing Containers in several areas of Jackson. It’s since expanded to 9 with plans of expending extra within the coming months as provides make growth out there.

“I’d love for us to nonetheless be right here 5 years from now and we’ve much more packing containers up serving to folks in want all through the town,” Shipp mentioned. “So we’re planning to place extra in once we can.”

Anybody eager about serving to out can contact Shipp at givebackjack@icloud.com.

Attain Brandon Shields at bjshields@jacksonsun.com or at 731-425-9751. Comply with him on Twitter @JSEditorBrandon or on Instagram at editorbrandon.

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