The unpostable photo has been posted!
 
I'm having troubles uploading photos today, so this will be a text-only post.  Now I'm sure you all were waiting for your weekly Conrad glam-shot.  I'm just as disappointed.  As soon as I figure out the problem, I'll get the photos posted.  
 
Today's speaker was Rod McKenzie of Higher Up Ministries.  Rod has spoken to our club before, and this time he highlighted the food pantry he runs with his wife and dozens of volunteers and local businesses.  
 
Rod's outreach to the Boxwood neighborhood has grown steadily since 1986 with many programs going beyond all expectations.  The same is true with the food pantry which started out as a small program designed to ensure kids could get something to eat while not in school.  Higher Up soon started providing bags of groceries to families during ministry events. This proved so popular that Rod soon started looking into how to make this a regular program.  The biggest challenge he faced was the fact that for grocery stores to partner with him, he needed to commit to a weekly pickup.  Since that was too large an undertaking for Higher Up to take on, they partnered with the Bridge Community Church to alternate weeks for their constituencies.  
 
With two Jewel stores and several restaurants donating a wide range of food, families now often leave with 3 or 4 bags of groceries.  Since many homes are multi-generational, this food is greatly appreciated.  Rod serves 30-40 families each week.  The folks at Bridge serve 50-70.  The Jewel on Euclid has even stepped up and named Higher Up as it's charity of choice for holiday meals purchased with Jewel Bucks.  
 
Rod's partnership with Bridge is showing other benefits as well.  The Bridge will soon purchase the Prospect Christian Church building and merge with the congregation.  Rod's ministry will be able to use the building for their programs and allow for an expanded food pantry.  
 
Rod and Jen McKenzie continue to do inspirational work with Higher Up Ministries.  We look forward to Rod's next visit to our club to update his work.
 
 
 

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