You Won’t Believe How Many Children This Lake Wales Woman Feeds Every Week
by James Coulter
Three weeks ago, Michelle Threatt answered a call from God to feed the people in her community. She set up a tent in her driveway, grilled hot dogs and French fries, and served them to whoever was hungry. Overall, she and her volunteers fed 74 children and 11 adults that day.
“It was laid on my heart to feed the children,” Threatt said. “God laid it on my heart to do [it] a few weeks, let’s feed the children. It is a hard time for some families, [so I wanted] to help out and give a little bit to eat.”
A lifelong Lake Wales resident, Threatt previously worked at the Polk County Sheriff’s Office for 15 years. After retiring in 2017, she wanted to pursue her dream in owning her own food truck, which she still wants to do. However, a few weeks ago, she discovered a new calling after skimming through social media and praying.
She discovered through Facebook posts that the only meal most children eat are the school lunches provided at school; but with schools closed due to the current coronavirus crisis, many children are now left without anything to eat. She wanted to do something to address that.
“If somebody don’t stand up or do something for them,
what are they going to do?” she asked.
“How are they going to eat if someone don’t do something? A lot of people will say they won’t do it. If not them, then who? I was thinking of that. If I wouldn’t have done it, who would have?”
Three weeks ago, she decided to gather a few local educators and teachers that she knew to help her feed the children of her local community. Her first week, she felt compelled specifically to serve hot dogs and French fries, but due to her own financial difficulties, she discovered she wasn’t able to afford all that food. By happenstance, she received a call from a neighbor telling her they had purchased several packs of meat for her, including four large packs of hot dogs.
“I began to cry a little bit,” she confessed. “He asked what is wrong. I said God laid it on my heart to get involved with our community and feed the children, [and] what I wanted to serve is hot dogs and you have four packs.”
That Wednesday, she and her team set up in her local driveway and served hot dogs, French fries, juice, and popsicles. They were able to feed nearly a hundred children and adults that day.
Since then, they have been regularly serving lunches weekly from her driveway, and feeding more people every week. Last Wednesday, they served brown bag lunches with sandwiches, snacks, fresh fruit cups, cookies, and juices, to 124 children and 25 adults.
To ensure the safety of her volunteers and the people that they serve, Threatt takes special precautions. She and her team wear gloves that they regularly change. They use plenty of hand sanitizer and ensured no volunteers has any compromised immune systems. Most importantly, Threatt prays before every meal.
“I trust God, I say my prayers, I pace up and down my driveway for all of us to be covered” she explained. “I believe God would not lay something on my heart for something negative to come from it.”
Each and every week sees more people being served more meals. Many of them are from her local Lake Wales neighborhood. Others have even come from as far as Haines City and Lake Hamilton.
Most of the increased turnout has been due to more people discovering her through social media. Her Facebook wall features comments expressing gratitude for her compassion and service.
“You’re being a blessing to our kids and community,” one person wrote. “I thank you and appreciate all that you do and continue to do!”
“God Blessings flow over you Michelle Threatt as you continue to Bless his children,” another person wrote. “I know God will send even more helpers in Jesus Name-Amen.”
Threatt humbly owes all of her success to God and to the people who help her. Through her, they have discovered a sense of community.
“A village has come together to make it happen; so it is not just me, it is everybody who has come together for a cause,” she explained. “We are all having a hard time right now, but if we come together, we created a village, and I am happy it laid on my heart and I was obeyed and moved as he led me to do.”
Threatt will be serving lunches once again from the driveway of her home. This week, her team is serving spaghetti dinners. Lunch will be served at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday at 606 West Jackson Avenue in Lake Wales, right behind Florida Natural.
For more information, visit her Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/michelle.threatt.98