Assemblymember Mike Gipson, Bishop Garon Harden, Bishop Maurice Johnson, Mayor Emma Sharif, Lady Penny Johnson, Lina Noel and Granville Noel at the grand opening. (Courtesy photo)

With the prices of groceries up, many people are struggling to put food on the table. Pastor Maurice Johnson of Kingdom Life Christian Fellowship was doing a once-a-month food program and suddenly, there were no resources. Johnson faced a dilemma on how to keep feeding the community. Johnson reached out to a friend, Bishop Garon Harden.

Harden put the pastor in touch with Noel Community Organization, a non-profit organization that connects with community leaders who want to host food drives or start food pantries. As a result, the Noel Community Organization partnered with Kingdom Life Christian Fellowship to open a non-profit food pantry located at the KLCF in Compton.

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“With the price of groceries so high, it’s tough for families to feed their children this takes a burden off their finances,” said Granville Noel, president of Noel Community Organization.

“We put a box together that contains veggies, meats, and dry goods,” added Lina Noel, administrator of the Noel Community Organization.

On March 16, the grand opening of the pantry was held. The pantry is located at 1919 East Compton Blvd., in the city of Compton. The grand opening of the pantry was attended by Compton Mayor Emma Sharif and State Assemblymember Mike Gipson. Sharif presented a proclamation to recognize the work of the KLCF and the Noel Community Organization.

“We are grateful to feed the Compton community,” said Granville Noel, who explained that his organization operates pantries in Los Angeles, Long Beach, and now Compton.

“We connect with community leaders that want to put on food drives and start food pantries. The food comes from the food bank,” said Lina Noel.

The KLCF congregation was also out in full force to support the opening of the pantry.  They gave a thunderous applause as Gipson presented Pastor Johnson with a certificate recognizing his work.

“I get excited because of the pastor’s vision and I celebrate you, ” said the assemblymember as he presented the certificate to Johnson. Other attendees included Associate Pastor Jane Lovett and several community members who came to gather food for their family or friends. Most of the individuals drove through and picked up their items.

“We need politicians and churches to make our cities and State better places,” said Pastor Johnson. According to Granville Noel, the pantry will be open every third Saturday of the month or by appointment.

One booth included donated purses that contained personal hygiene products and Lovett has traveled to Skid Row to distribute them to people in need. She calls them purses full of promises. Lovett’s goal is to reach as many unhoused women as possible in Los Angeles and surrounding areas. There were clothes as well at the booth.

Another vendor present was Carol Williams, who has been selling Sweet C glam collection, part of a company called Paparazzi, for seven years.

“I buy the collections at  a discount and sell all pieces –  bracelets and other collections – for $5,” said Williams. “All proceeds go to the Women’s Department of the church,” she added.

Those seeking assistance can visit the pantry on the third Saturday of the month or call (424) 324-9876 for an appointment.  To donate to the pantry, call (562)-335-1330.