It’s in the bag: Brookshire Brothers’ Brown Bag of Hope providing holiday meals for locals in need

by By Cristin Parker

Brookshire Brothers grocery stores across Cherokee County want to make sure no one goes hungry this holiday season.

For just $10, customers of the Jacksonville, Rusk and Alto stores can purchase a Brown Bag of Hope containing food for families in need.
“In our stores that have delis, we also have a program called Help a Neighbor in Need,” the grocery chain’s Director of Marketing Sally Alvis said. “This gives organizations and individuals an opportunity to purchase a complete holiday dinner for those who may go without. These are often distributed through churches and nonprofits during the holiday season.

“This and our Brown Bag of Hope program both tie directly to who we are as ‘a community grocer’ and an employee owned company. Our customers purchase the bags and our store teams determine how to best distribute them. Whether it’s to food pantries, school counselors, the police or sheriff’s department – stores make sure they get them to the organizations that can best distribute them where they will do the most good.

“As a company, we are known to match our customers’ generosity by donating additional bags to address a specific or urgent need in a community.”

Bags sold at the Rusk location will be provided to the Good Samaritan.

“Corporate has set a goal of 50, but we want to double that,” Rusk Brookshire Bros Assistant Store Director Patrick Green said. “$10 is just a little bit of money, but it helps a whole lot of people.”

Jan Townsend, a longtime volunteer with the Good Samaritan, added, “Brookshire Brothers has always been very good with their support of the Good Samaritan. The need always picks up during the holidays.”

Townsend said the Good Samaritan serves more than 200 families in the Rusk area.

Bags sold at the Jacksonville location benefit HOPE (Helping Others Pursue Enrichment) Inc.

“This is a great opportunity to give back to our community members,” Jacksonville Assistant Store Director Jimmy George said. “We’ve always had tremendous customer response to this program every year and we appreciate everyone’s help.”

Bags sold at the Alto B&B store benefit the Community Food Pantry at the Chaparral Center in Alto.

Brown Bags of Hope currently available at local stores include:

- The Holiday Baking Bag, containing one 2-pound bag each of Food Club sugar and flour; a box of Food Club cake mix and a can of Food Club frosting; a box of Food Club vanilla pudding, a box of Food Club vanilla wafers a bag of Food Club chocolate chips; and a bag of Food Club mini marshmallows; and

- The Holiday Cooking Bag, which includes two cans each of Food Club French-cut green beans, whole corn and cream of mushroom soup; two packages of Food Club cornbread mix; a can of Food Club cranberry sauce; one box each of Food Club stuffing mix and deluxe shells n cheese; and one can of Food Club fried onions.

Bags that are offered all year are the Multi-Meal Bag, the Basics Bag, the Spaghetti Bag; the Toiletries Bag; and the School Supply Bag.