Mayor encourages Day of Service participation

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By Hannah Richardson

We are still living in the phase of cancelled/postponed events due to the pandemic, which has caused the annual ceremony honoring Martin Luther King Jr. Day to also be postponed.

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In light of this year’s upcoming Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Natchitoches Mayor Ronnie Williams is challenging groups, organizations, and individuals to participate in a Day of Service in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King.  The City of Natchitoches will host a day of service on Saturday, Jan. 16.

Ideas for service projects on this day include delivering meals to elderly, veterans or low income areas within your community, planning a cleanup, collecting food or volunteering at the local food pantry or even making a monetary or tangible donation to a service organization in your city.

If you’re looking into donating to a local food pantry, the Cane River Food Pantry is in need of donations. Their office is located at 220 Amulet Street, the offices for First United Methodist Church and is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

“In particular we need canned vegetables,” said Donna Greene of the Cane River Food Pantry. “We normally purchase our food from the central Louisiana food bank since they only charge 18 cents a pound, but the pandemic and two hurricanes have really taxed their supplies of canned veggies. We can also use rice, cereal, peanut butter, ramen noodles, Mac and cheese, spaghetti sauce and canned tuna.”

Lynda Hammett also emphasized the need for canned vegetables. “Food banks staples that are always nice to have on hand is peanut butter, mac and cheese, spaghetti sauce, spaghetti noodles (1 or 2lb), rice (1 or 2lb), and canned meats like tuna.” The best time to drop off donations is on Tuesdays from 10-noon. Volunteers are also appreciated to help unload the food truck, pack boxes and distribute food.

To make a donation, make the check out to Cane River Food Pantry, P.O. Box 120, Natchitoches, Louisiana. 71458. For more details on how to help, contact the food pantry via email at caneriverfoodpantry@gmail.com or visit their Facebook page.