Southside Baptist’s Food Bank needs your help—here’s how to get involved

southside food bank
Food bank volunteers unloading the food. (Camille Womack / Bham Now)

Southside Baptist’s Food Bank has been a cornerstone of the community for many decades but to keep them striving, they need your help. Read on to learn about this important Birmingham organization and how you can help them continue to make an impact. 

About Southside Baptist’s Food Bank 

southside baptist food bank
The door of the Southside Baptist’s Food Bank. (Camille Womack / Bham Now)

Southside Baptist Food Bank is an affiliate of Southside Baptist Church and is the longest-running food bank in the City of Birmingham. The Food Bank was started by the men’s bible study group in the 80s. It first functioned as a store for individuals to shop for things necessities like food. In addition to the Food Bank, the church’s women’s bible study started a clothes closet that closed during the pandemic. 

A local church fulfills a need

southside food bank
Melissa (purple) unboxing the food with long-time food bank volunteer, Brenda. (Camille Womack / Bham Now)

Melissa Robillard is the current Director of Volunteers and Food Ordering for Southside’s Food Bank. She got involved when her church, Iron City Church, saw the Food Bank would benefit from a director as well as young volunteers. 

Meeting the communities’ need

During Melissa’s time as Director of Volunteers and Food Ordering, she has seen an increase in Food Bank visitors. Since the pandemic, this number has grown to a biweekly increase of 120 families. Melissa and volunteers take the first half of the day to pick up the food and bring it back to the church. They then organize the food into certain stations so the packing process is easier. 

The Food Bank receives the food from local community food banks and grocery stores. They begin handing out the food around noon in a drive-thru line on the side of the church. The food bank distributes food every two weeks on Thursdays. They do try to keep food on hand for emergencies.  

What’s included in each donation box?

southside baptist food bank
The boxes of frozen meat about to get stored in time for distribution. (Camille Womack / Bham Now)

Frozen foods box contain: 

  • Meats
  • Dinner
  • Dairy products (cheese, butter, milk, etc.) 

Food items included in donation bags include: 

  • Canned goods 
  • Pasta
  • Packaged dry goods
  • Pastries 

How to get involved

The food bank is in need of young volunteers to help distribute and package food. The food bank is open every two weeks on Thursdays, from 9AM-3PM. Volunteers are welcome to come anytime between 9:30AM-2PM and help with packing and/or handing out food. 

The next food bank takes place on July 7. 

If you or a group are interested in volunteering or donating, email Melissa Robillard or contact Southside Baptist Church for more information at 205-933-8381 or email them at churchassistant@southsidebirmingham.org

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Camille Womack
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