Oak Mountain Missions runs low on donations following holidays

By BECKY J. BEALL/Pelham Community Column

Feeding the hungry, helping domestic violence victims start over and providing clothing for needy families are all part of the everyday work at Oak Mountain Mission Ministries. No small undertaking, this 501(c)(3) non-profit organization runs mostly on volunteers and is supported by churches (Faith Support Churches), businesses, grants, schools and individuals.

“We start getting lots of food in around September and it’s mostly gone following the holidays, and by this time of year, donations are pretty low,” explained Dianne Cesario, assistant director at Oak Mountain Missions.

The Pelham-based organization does not have case managers, but has a feeder system of sorts through social service agencies and Faith Support Churches referring families and individuals to them for assistance with food, clothing and other needs. Most of these folks have nowhere else to turn and sometimes are homeless. Donations are paramount for this community help center and everyone can make a difference in some way.

Cesario says peanut butter is always a needed and popular item because of its protein value. “Some folks have no way to cook, so peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are a meal for them,” she adds.

Other needs are breakfast foods ranging from cereal and oatmeal to grits and breakfast bars. Also, paper products and toiletry items remain in high demand given that SNAP does not cover anything non-edible. Often people come to Oak Mountain Missions needing clothing (men, women and children are all included) from everyday wear to jackets, coats and shoes.

For those starting over following domestic violence, Oak Mountain Missions offers furniture and household items as they are available. The largest needs in that area are dressers (they only give one per family because they have so few), kitchen tables, sofas, linens, pots and pans, and dishes and silverware.

Donations may be dropped off during business hours Monday-Thursday from 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at 2699 Pelham Parkway. Please call (205) 685-5757 to arrange for pick-up of larger furniture-type donations and visit Oakmtnmissions.com for additional details regarding donations and background information. If you are searching for a fulfilling volunteer idea, they are always in need of help in this capacity.

There’s no better way to serve the Pelham community than by helping care for the hungry, hurting and healing.