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Rock Hill food pantry tent was destroyed in storm. This woman won't let that stop her

Rock Hill food pantry shelter was destroyed in storm

Mary Roseborough has been feeding the Rock Hill community for almost 20 years through her non-profit at the Love N Cherish Family Center Food Pantry. But after recent storms, the food pantry is left without shelter.
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Mary Roseborough has been feeding the Rock Hill community for almost 20 years through her non-profit at the Love N Cherish Family Center Food Pantry. But after recent storms, the food pantry is left without shelter.

Mary Roseborough grew up in a family with nine children, eating beans and bread for dinner every night.

Her family couldn't afford more than that on her grandmother's $25 a week salary.

For almost 20 years, she's been working to make sure other families have more.

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, Roseborough and volunteers at the Love N Cherish Family Center Food Pantry pass out boxes of food to underprivileged families in Rock Hill. Roseborough said the food pantry serves over 300 families each week.

But Roseborough has run into plenty of obstacles – neighborhood backlash, flooding in her building and now one more:

The extra-large tent she and her volunteers set up to shelter the food was destroyed in the past week's storms.

Roseborough said she bought the tent about six months ago, when the basement of the Love N Cherish Family Center, where she stored and gave out food, flooded.

The tent blew over during storms on March 14, she said. Her volunteers set the tent back up, but she said after hail and rain storms Tuesday, she found the tent completely destroyed.

"I was devastated," she said. "Just: 'Lord, what am I going to do?' And yesterday I came in and it just collapsed."

She and her volunteers gave out food in the rain, tent or no tent, she said.

"They're here every other day regardless whether it's cold, hot, rainy. I mean, I have some dedicated people coming out here to help the community," Roseborough said.

The food pantry was incorporated in 2008, but Roseborough has been giving out food in the community for about 10 years before that, she said.

She already has plans to move the nonprofit into a building, she said. She has the land and the plans – but not the money.

"We're just looking for some kind of funds to build a facility," she said. "And I know it's going to come. I just believe. We've been giving and giving and it's time for us to get a building."

Someone in the community has already stepped in to help them get another tent for the time being, Roseborough said, but also said this shows it's time for the organization to have a more permanent home.

Roseborough's daughter Erica Roseborough is the director of the organization's for-profit preschool. She said moving the nonprofit into a permanent building is a necessity.

The organization gets food donations from Second Harvest Food Bank, and Erica said they need a permanent building to continue qualifying for the food.

She said her mom has been helping the community for as long as she can remember.

"I just grew up with a heart to give and help everyone I could," Erica said.

She said her mom has been her inspiration in working to help the community.

Mary Roseborough started the day care center and food charity in her home. She bought supplies with her own money and worked to give people what she didn't have growing up.

Roseborough said the organization needs to raise about $325,000 to fund the building and continue helping. But she won't let any obstacle stop her.

"We're doing what God said to do," Mary Roseborough said. "And I'm going to do it 'till I die."

Hannah Smoot: 803-329-4068

Want to help?

Learn more about Love N Cherish Family Center at http://www.lovencherish.org/ and donate to the food pantry through Wells Fargo account Love N Cherish Family Center Food Pantry.

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