The Community Resource Center, a Summerville nonprofit, feeds, clothes and shelters the area’s most vulnerable residents.
The center, located at 116 W. 2nd North St., serves as a hub for the nonprofit but the organizations’ reach goes well beyond that block along Main Street.
Hundreds of Community Resource Center volunteers frequently walk the streets of Summerville, distributing food and hygiene care packages in the poorest neighborhoods of town. Volunteers serve “the least of these,” on a regular basis by providing free home repairs, offering after school care, tutoring, counseling, and life coaching for individuals recently released from jail or prison.
Louis Smith, executive director of the Community Resource Center, said the center’s food giveaways impact about 1,000 people per week despite the fact that the nonprofit receives no funding — local, state or federal. He said the center is in need of donations to continue its service.
An average of 20 bags of groceries per day are distributed from the center’s headquarters. Young parents and caregivers frequent the center’s diaper bank on a daily basis.
These resources would not be available if not for the Community Resource Center volunteers, Smith said.
“They put in a lot of hours and serve people with a lot of different hardships,” Smith said.
To show appreciation for the volunteers, Smith organized a special ceremony on Thursday at Keto’s Asian Fusion restaurant, next door to the center. He was joined by State Rep. Marvin Pendarvis, D-North Charleston, and Shaundra Young Scott, a civil rights activist.
Pendarvis recently made a motion on the House Floor to honor and commend 13 of the Community Resource Center volunteers.
Each of the volunteers received a certificate of appreciation during the ceremony.
“This represents more than just your contributions to the resource center,” Pendarvis said. “It represents your contributions to the Summerville community and the Lowcountry at large.”
Pendarvis said it is what people do for those who are less fortunate or, “the least of these,” that matters most in society.
Scott told the group that their work in Summerville serves as a model for other resource groups in North Charleston. She encouraged the volunteers to “keep going, keep the lovelight burning.”
“There is a huge need that has gone ignored,” Scott said. “If we as a community don’t come together to help the community, no one else will.”