The Raleigh Dream Center was serving 6 communities when 2020 began; that number has more than quadrupled to 26 communities in Wake County since the coronavirus pandemic started.
“I kind of compare it to, in January and February, we had served an average of 10,000 pounds of food a month. Since the pandemic started, we’ve served 120,000 pounds in the last 10 weeks,” stated Jeremy Porras, executive director and co-founder of the Raleigh Dream Center
The Dream Center is now providing meals to children 18 years old and younger each week day along with providing meals to families without transportation every other Saturday of the month. All of this would not be possible without the 450 volunteers each week.
“We also work with local churches,” said Porras. “It’s that churches that are sending volunteers to us regularly. So we’re saying, well, if there’s an apartment complex near that church, it was a natural fit. So, as they were also identifying locations, we were able to just pair churches up with a community that was right next door to them, and so, that’s really how we were able to expand quickly into 26 communities around the county.”
Porras says they worked with Wake County Human Services to identify the communities in need and are provided meals daily from the Wake County School System.
“We have a simple motto that says ‘Find a need and fill it; find a hurt and heal it.’ We are a faith-based organization. We believe the Bible teaches us to reach out to those in need and to share our message of faith in those communities. So when this all happened, I feel like the Lord gave me a clear path of this is what it will be to get into these communities, and I just said a simple yes, and that turned into these 26 communities,” Porras explained.
Their ultimate goal is to provide a residential service to help those in rehabilitation from addiction.
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