Being located closer to government agencies, other feeding programs and media should help the Mississippi office of the Society of St. Andrew grow, its director says.
“We’re excited about coming to Jackson,” said Bob Fritchey, director of the state office of the hunger-fighting organization. “We’re looking forward to taking advantage of support from the people in the Jackson area. We’ll also be partnering with different organizations for support.”
SoSA had been housed at Wood Institute in Mathiston, but that facility closed June 30. Fritchey said he’s still seeking a location in Jackson. He said the office could be located in a church or space offered by other feeding organizations.
Founded in Big Island, Va., in 1979, the Society of St. Andrew (Advance #801600) salvages wholesome, nutritious produce that is destined to be wasted, and transports it to food banks and agencies that feed people in need. SoSA works with farmers, growers and produce packing plants at two crucial points – in fields and orchards after the harvest and during the produce grading process – to salvage nutritious, edible fruits and vegetables that don’t meet the aesthetic standards of many produce vendors.
SoSA recently added two staff members to coordinate efforts in the north and south ends of the state; Bill Youngblood in Hattiesburg and Larry Woodward in Louisville. Fritchey said a similar position will be filled in Central Mississippi.
“The (Mississippi) Conference has been so supportive,” Fritchey said. “The Wood location turned out to be a good thing with Mississippi State (University) nearby as well as sweet potato growers. We will continue to count on them, but the move to Jackson will be a real shot in the arm for us.”
Fritchey said SoSA can still be reached at 662-263-8648 or 731-676-8001 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.