Response Updates

A Moment in Marlborough, Massachusetts

USA Reported by Convoy of Hope

The French Hill neighborhood of Marlborough, Massachusetts, is too frequently overlooked and ignored. Cops will tell you it’s the neighborhood they hear about most on their scanners. This is exactly the place we wanted to be on Saturday, October 12, for a Convoy of Hope Community Event.

Months ago, the city’s mayor indicated to local pastor and volunteer event coordinator, Rob Woods, that no one was doing anything for French Hill. The mayor also felt that the community’s churches and community organizations hadn’t ever worked together to benefit Marlborough. The sentiment was that if this event somehow got pulled off, it would be a first for the community.

After months of planning and preparation, 990 Guests of Honor were greeted by 330 excited and united volunteers who represented 63 different churches and community organizations. Some volunteers drove more than 30 miles just to be at the city park to serve their community.

Halfway through the morning, Marilyn, a volunteer leader responsible for children’s shoes, shared the story of a woman whom she’d invited the week prior. Marilyn remembered the woman as uninterested and even bothered by the invitation.

“Today she came and told me she was glad she brought her family, most people who seek her out don’t bring good news,” said Marilyn, recalling the guest’s explanation. “She said her kids needed shoes and this was a good thing!”

Later in the day, the mayor and members of the city council described what they saw as something that appeared to have been taking place in the community for years, not just a first time effort.

One of the first-time volunteers in the Family Portraits area shared that she had served a sentence in prison for a number of years. Through welled up eyes, she told me, “You don’t know how many lives you have touched today.” Like many others, she came to give back to her community and demonstrate love in unity.

Saturday, October 12, has passed but thousands of pounds of groceries left after the event are being distributed by volunteers through home visits with residents of the French Hill neighborhood. This Saturday was an important moment in the community of Marlborough, but most exciting is the movement of compassion that lives on through volunteers, churches, and local organizations.

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Where was hope in 2023? For Convoy of Hope, last year was full of heartfelt stories, transformed lives, and major milestones. Here's a quick recap:

In 2023 ...
🍽️ 571,000+ children engaged in strategic feeding program
👩‍🌾 30,000+ farmers trained
🌷 48,000+ women and girls…