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Sergei Hudson and Jessie Stevens

"God really does give us everything we need"

Jessie Stevens and Sergei Hudson live in a small two-bedroom apartment with their three daughters. There are times when they only rice left to feed their daughters. But they were all smiles this day leaving the Spirit of Life Catholic Church Food Pantry & Soup Kitchen, a partner agency of the Great Plains Food Bank, knowing they had the means to make it to the end of the month.

Sergei Hudson and Jessie Stevens live in a small two-bedroom apartment in Bismarck with their 7-year-old, 5-year-old and 19-month-old daughters. With so many mouths to feed, they find it difficult at times to keep enough food and other items in the apartment to fill the needs of their family.

“Oh my gosh, zero,” Jessie quickly said when asked how much money the couple has left over at the end of an average month. “We have nothing left over.”

On this particular day they had just rice available to eat in the apartment and decided it was time to visit the Spirit of Life Catholic Church Food Pantry & Soup Kitchen in Mandan, a partner agency of the Great Plains Food Bank.

“We’re kind of going through a rocky time in our lives right now,” Jessie said. “Our income and everything is at a halt right now. Our money is tied up in gas to try and get to work and things like that. To come here and you (Spirit of Life Catholic Church Food Pantry & Soup Kitchen) actually have food that’s not expired. It is so nice because now the kids get the food and they aren’t like, ‘OK it’s rice.’”

Jessie works in the service industry and Sergei works in concrete construction where finding consistent work year-round can be difficult. Specifically, the winter months are hard for Sergei, which creates a strain on the couple.

The food pantry has allowed them to get fresh foods and produce and items they wouldn’t otherwise be able to obtain. It also provides the couple with things like shampoo and conditioner and other toiletry and personal hygiene items that are difficult to come by.

“My daughter was taking a shower and I was like, ‘look we got new conditioner,’” Jessie said. “She asked where it came from. I told her the church (Spirit of Life) and she was like, ‘God really does give us everything we need.’”

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