Hundreds of food baskets are now in the hands of those who need a helping hand this holiday season. King’s Community Outreach Christmas baskets were distributed Saturday, December 15 to residents who live near Pontiac and Warsaw streets.

“This can make a Christ-like difference in this community,” said founder Lewis King. “We have more volunteers this year and we have a solid base of people who work throughout the year.”

For more than six years volunteers have worked to fill the baskets. They meet at King’s Barbershop at the corner of Pontiac and Warsaw streets. “With our baskets and the amount of people that we are touching and with how the community is committed to allowing this to be an annual event I think we’ve grown tremendously,” said King.

The basket giveaway idea developed during barbershop bible study several years ago with King and a few friends. “I remember when we did 50 baskets,” said volunteer Don Merino. “It’s now 300 and above. So God has blessed the ministry.”

King’s Community Outreach partners with about 20 agencies that help the less fortunate. All of the food and baskets are donated. Each basket is filled with about 40 pounds of food. “First of all there’s a turkey,” said Merino. “We also have fresh produce and a four pound bag of sugar that is added to non-perishable goods. So it amounts to about 40 pounds.”

“Lewis was doing this well before we got married,” said Joy King. She joined the volunteer ranks of her husband’s organization a couple years ago. “When we’re passing out these baskets to people I see hope,” said Mrs. King. “I see happiness. I see a relief for the holiday that they don’t have the stress and worry and strain about where their meal is going to come from.”

It’s an opportunity for us all to come together for people that are in need,” the couple said. “For our volunteers and everyone in the community who gives, we want to say thank you.”

For more information on King’s Community Outreach call 260-745-3650.