Community need is growing, turnout is shrinking


Reporter - Elizabeth Fields
Photojournalist - Mason Watkins

FULTON, Ky. - Debbie Jackson organizes the free monthly meals at First Christian Church in Fulton, Kentucky. She said she heard the news that unemployment numbers are down for her county, but she doesn't think the need is shrinking at all.

"Oh it's just getting worse every day, she said. "It's really sad."

She and the rest of the small congregation have been serving their meals for four years now and the numbers have only gone up.

"We have some you can just tell are really down on their luck," she said. But she's thankful they come. She says because they're willing to swallow their pride, she tries to serve a little extra hope with her hot meals.  

On average, she serves about 110 people meals, but she adds that she knows that number is low compared to the number of people in need. She has a theory why. "They don't want to sit down and let other people see that they have a need."

As a result, Jackson started serving meals to-go. "We got some ridicule at the first for doing that, but hey, food is food."

There are some perks to sitting down for the meal, like fresh baked desserts, but Jackson said no one is pressured either way.

Meals are served at the church on the fourth Saturday of the month. It's located at 108 Carr Street in Fulton, Kentucky.   Doors are open from 11a.m. until 1p.m.