Online Speaker Brandon Oates and Lakeya, Shepherd’s Table

Brandon Oates and Lakeya joined us from Shepherd’s Table in Conway, SC.  The Carolina Forest Rotary Club has been regularly involved with Shepherd’s Table over the last few years, helping to serve an evening meal or two a month.  Shepherd’s Table is a soup kitchen in Conway that is supported by a number of churches in the community.  It was established in 2007 out of a church basement.  Normally they serve 30-50 lunches a day and 80-100 dinners, Monday through Friday.  They also prepare weekend bags for patrons.  

Since the pandemic shutdown, they have shifted to a skeleton crew of Brandon and Lakeya and three permanent volunteers.   Numbers have increased to 60 for lunch and 100 for dinners.  The menu has generally not changed with soup/sandwich lunch and a hot dinner.  The food is distributed in TO-GO boxes, with staff wearing facemasks and gloves and patrons staying 6 feet apart.  Recently, Shepherd’s Table conducted its monthly “Fresh Express” fresh vegetable distribution in a drive-thru fashion.  Instead of feeding 150-200 people, they were able to serve 290 families that day.  

During this stay at home time, Shepherd’s Table has received some major donations from Outreach Farms, Sysco, and the local Church of the Latter Day Saints.  Church proceeds were very low in April, when Shepherd’s Table served 1,973 hot meals.  Shepherd’s Table has been selected as one of the recipients of the Carolina Forest Rotary Club’s “Rotary Serves Virtual Food Drive” fundraiser.
Thank you Brandon and Lakeya for “Zooming” with the club!
By Scott Burleson