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Local church trying to be a part of $1 million hunger challenge

Updated: Monday, April 7 2014, 06:16 PM EDT
YORKVILLE, Ohio -- For 16 years, Rhode Island philanthropist Alan Feinstein has been giving away $1 million each year to anti-hunger agencies throughout the country in a program called $1 Million Giveaway to Fight Hunger.
This year, the Yorkville United Methodist Church is trying to be involved in the challenge. There is no word yet if it will.
But here's how it works: The more money the church brings in through donations, it will get even more of Feinstein's $1 million, which last year was split among 15 different hunger programs throughout the country.
This is the first year the church became involved in Fenstein's challenge, which is in its 17th year.
"Well what it means for the church is that the church budgets the funding for our food pantry, and that (would) spread our funds out by any donations we receive from not only our donors, but from the matching money," said Gloria Closser, coordinator for the church's food pantry.
The challenge runs from March 1 to April 20, so anyone who donates during this time period may have that donation matched by the challenge.
 "Money would go toward their purpose," Closser said. "We purchase all of our food and toiletries for our clients. No one gets paid. They all volunteer so every cent goes toward our food pantry."
Closser said the church pantry started out with 25 people and now serve more than 100 families. She said they had to file a report and verify that they've been donating funding for their food pantry through the Fenstein Challenge.
 "I was reading a commercial and it said caring cannot be just spoken about, but it has to be done," Pastor Tom Thomas said. "I think that's what we're doing."
Closser said the checks will be sent in August if they make it in. If residents want to send any donations -- money or food -- they can donate in church, or send it to them.
Every dollar is matched, and every pound of food they take in is a matched $1 per pound.

Local church trying to be a part of $1 million hunger challenge

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