POLAND, Ohio (WYTV) – If you had told our Hometown Hero in 2002 that she would eventually be feeding hundreds of hungry people each month, she never would have believed you. One local couple has built an amazing enterprise inside the New Life Church in Poland.
If God had a food warehouse, it might look like this — well, at least he’s got a truck, ending hunger one family at a time. The God’s Warehouse Food Pantry is the brainchild of Anita Oles and her husband Norm. For them, it’s a dream come true.
“We decided there was a need and there were a lot of several single moms that we knew were struggling and that was the main purpose behind starting it,” Anita said.
What started 20 years ago as almost a hobby — feeding half a dozen families — has become an enterprise with a warehouse, refrigerated food truck and plenty of freezers. Now, 800 families.
Norm reflected on what it’s like working with his wife.
“Well, after 42 years of marriage, it’s really easy because even though we’ve only done this 19 years, 42 years of marriage trained me!” he said.
Anita says she couldn’t do any of this without all of her volunteers. Chuck Mirone, for example, just turned 90.
“She’s God’s blessed in this world. She is, she’s a great lady. I’ve been here a long time and it’s a great people, people here are great,” Mirone said.
“But just slowly, every month, it’s gotten bigger and you know, we’ve really grown. God’s blessed us,” Anita said.
Most of the food comes from the Second Harvest Food Bank. Volunteers were getting ready for their next big Saturday distribution on Nov. 19 and, of course, Thanksgiving after that. Everyone is welcome, no questions asked. Just bring a photo ID.