Vanessa worked for decades in a factory and raised two boys on her own. Now she’s disabled and relies on a small amount of food stamps to buy limited groceries. She says as hard as she tries to stretch her resources, the last week of the month is always a struggle.
That’s why she was so relieved she found Greenhouse Ministries, a Second Harvest Partner Agency near her home in Murfreesboro. She can pick up a variety of nutritious, shelf-stable items from the food pantry, along with fresh fruits and vegetables from the Second Harvest Mobile Pantry that stops by Greenhouse Ministries each month.
Vanessa overcomes painful past and helps other women create hopeful futures
More than providing life-sustaining groceries, Greenhouse Ministries has given Vanessa meaningful opportunities to help others. She began volunteering as an intake counselor and, after a few months, she offered to teach a sewing class.
You see, Vanessa’s lived a very difficult life since she was just a little girl. She was diagnosed with post- traumatic stress disorder and taught herself to sew as a way to cope with her anxiety. Now she shares this tool with other women to help them build confidence.
Vanessa’s been teaching her neighbors to sew at Greenhouse for the past year. Beyond just sharing a meaningful skill, the class offers a confidence-building, peer-to-peer therapeutic opportunity for women who’ve endured hardships like she has.
“What you do is give out blessings.”
Vanessa’s an inspiration — she’s been able to use the turmoil from her past to help others in need. She deserves the dignity of food on her table.
“What you do is give out blessings,” she says to friends like you. “And they’ll come back to you in ways you don’t even think about!”
Want to help women like Vanessa? Learn how to donate to Second Harvest . We offer many options including one time as well as recurring gifts.