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Connie Vandermay/FOCUS The new Raven Food Ministry relies on volunteers to collect, sort and pass out food for families in need.

New food ministry in Perham helps many in need

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The new Raven Food Ministry at Northwoods Assembly of God Church in Perham has been handing out an estimated $3,000 worth of food every week to families in need.

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The ministry is just six weeks old and serves an av-erage of 75 people a week.

"It went so much bigger and faster than anticipated," Northwoods minister Dirk Currier said in an interview.

The mission of Raven Food Ministry isn't to replace the efforts of the Perham Food Shelf, but rather to assist the food shelf by offering perishable items like produce and bread every Tuesday evening.

On Monday afternoons, community volunteers take a pickup truck and trailer to River Valley Church in Moorhead to collect food. Monday evenings, other volunteers gather at the church to sort the food into various 'shopping' stations throughout the sanctuary.

Then, on Tuesday nights from 5-6:30 p.m., those in need are invited to Northwoods to receive a box of food, along with opportunity for encouraging conversation.

Currier shared one woman's story, in which one week she came in need of food, and the next week she came back to volunteer.

The Raven Food Ministry is looking for additional volunteers as well as people to spread the message of the ministry to those in need. In the next couple of months, the ministry will also be in need of a walk-in cooler to keep food cool once the weather warms up.

Northwoods is located at 945 W. Main Street. Contact Currier at 346-5433 for more information.

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