Loaves and Fishes purchases food truck to continue serving the community

Loaves and Fishes has provided meals to those in the East Biloxi Community twice a day, four times a week for over 37 years.

To extend their reach even further, the local nonprofit decided to purchase a food truck.

What started off as a small social justice committee in 1983 whose goal was to feed the homeless has turned into a full-time nonprofit serving thousands of meals a month whose goal is to not only feed the homeless, but to feed the hungry. Loaves and Fishes Kitchen Manager and Chef Charles Smith said, “It’s all about giving back. We are being blessed through God. We are being blessed through the community. It humbles you when you do this for people.”

In January, Loaves and Fishes moved from their old location to Back Bay Mission, another nonprofit in Biloxi, who allowed them to use their kitchen to continue to prepare their meals and feed those in need. Back Bay Mission Executive Director James Pennington said, “They no longer had their space and they needed a space. So, absolutely the right thing to do, especially because people used to have to walk from here to Loaves and Fishes to get their meal and then come back to the day center here.”

Smith prepares two hot meals a day, including a grab-and-go snack, four days a week. Smith says by Loaves and Fishes being in the process of looking for a new home, the food truck was a great addition to keep the meals coming. “So, the food truck is going to be in between so that way I can keep on cooking my meals for the homeless, feeding them good, hot meals.”

The food truck was purchased from a local couple after they decided to get out of the food industry.

The truck is set up exactly like a kitchen with four basket fryers, an oven, top grill, four burners, a deep freezer, a cooler, and a three-wheel wash area. Loaves and Fishes Executive Director Suzanne Guice said, “The vehicle is in perfect condition. The equipment is nearly brand new. So, we are very fortunate.”

With this new food truck, Loaves and Fishes will not only be able to cook and prepare meals at the temporary home, but they will also be able to travel wherever the need is. “It is an incredible piece of equipment that we are going to be able to feed the hungry, whether it’s here or at another location or what have you. We got the flexibility now and we are thrilled to death.”

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