Valley community college partners with St. Mary's Food Bank to feed families

- The first and third Friday of every month is a busy time on the campus of South Mountain Community College.

"We serve over 2,500 families between September and May," said Buddy Cheeks, director of student life and leadership for SMCC.

Cheeks says as many as 200 families receive fresh fruits and vegetables, anything from lettuce and potatoes to bread and bananas.

All of this is served to them by students like golfer Justin Warren, who volunteer for the first time on Friday.

"It's great, you know, it's good to help out the community and do something nice for people less fortunate than us," he said.

The college's relationship with St. Mary's Food Bank goes back at least 15 years. On days when the free mobile food pantry distribution is open, St. Mary's trucks over all the food that's given away.

SMCC is one of two community distribution sites, which make for a perfect lesson in humanity, says Cheeks.

"We hope our students can gain leadership from skills for this and organizing skills," he said. "It's more important than anything that our students participate more than anything else."

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