Local nonprofit holds March for Hunger Food Truck Rally

Published 6:31 pm Monday, March 13, 2023

By NOAH WORTHAM | Staff Writer

HOOVER – It was a bright sunny day in Hoover as local residents enjoyed a variety of food trucks at the March for Hunger Food Truck Rally.

The event was held at Veterans Park on Saturday, March 11 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and was put on by local nonprofit Grace Klein Community.

“We’re so excited to partner with the city of Hoover and to be at Veterans Park,” Grace Klein Community Founder Jenny Waltman said. “To rally the community and give them some additional exposure to all the different services of Grace Klein Community as well as March for Hunger and raise funding and collect canned foods to be able to feed the hungry in our community.”

A variety of food trucks were present at the event alongside multiple tables representing different GKC organizations.

“We’re all about food,” said Jessica Armstrong, food rescue assistant vista with GKC. “We’re all about rescuing food. This is a way for us to reach out to other partners and future partners to see if they are an opportunity that we can rescue from as well.”

Armstrong is part of the UAB-AmeriCorps VISTA program and came up with the idea of holding the food truck rally.

“My idea of having the food trucks is really to incorporate small businesses in our community to come out and participate, not only in the fundraising portion of it, but really just to participate in the community,” Armstrong said. “(People are) coming out here supporting the small businesses, and then those small business are supporting us by their donations as well. We’re taking in food donations, we’re taking in the canned goods, and it’s really just to provide awareness for Grace Klein.”

Waltman said the event served as a fundraiser for the organization.

“Grace Klein Community has a food rescue initiative called Feed BHM, and this is a fundraiser to help support that initiative in our March for Hunger campaign,” Waltman said. “Every year in March, we march for hunger, and Jessica (Armstrong) brought forward the idea of being able to do a food truck rally in support of March for Hunger.”

Grace Klein Community’s Feed BHM initiative is a project that helps to solve food insecurity issues in the greater Birmingham area.

“Grace Klein Community shares resources to build relationships for the purpose of restoration (of) individuals, families and entire communities,” Waltman said. “Why food rescue is so important is 40 percent of the food that is wasted can be reallocated to feed the one in four that are food insecure in the state of Alabama. We have a unique situation where we’re using one problem to be the solution to another problem.”

GKC provides other services alongside the Feed BHM initiative.

“Feed BHM is our big flag, but we also have a cooking club and a gardening club where we work with the Master Gardeners of Alabama,” Armstrong said. “We have a Love Does club who put together rescued flower arrangements and those flowers (that) go out to nursing homes and other clients who just need a smile on their face for the day.”

Waltman shared the reasoning behind the name Grace Klein Community.

“Grace Klein means little gift from God,” Waltman said. “When we give you something small, that’s a gift from God and the big gift is Jesus.”

More information of Grace Klein Community can be found on its official Facebook page at Facebook.com/gracekleincommunity.