Mainland-Wide Food Drive For Ocracoke



Ocracoke’s friends and neighbors across the Pamlico Sound on Mainland Hyde County have organized a Mainland-wide food drive to help restock the Bread of Life Food Pantry on Ocracoke. The initiative is headed up by Swan Quarter Volunteer Fire Department (SQVFD) Fire Chief Jeffrey Stotesberry, with help from local churches, businesses and residents.


The recent loss of power on Ocracoke and a mandatory evacuation of all non-residents resulted in most Ocracoke businesses closing their doors and many residents without a job (or paycheck) for a week. The loss of income at a time when business is usually brisk – and the loss of food in their own refrigerators and freezers – has been felt across the island. The Pantry, operated by the Ocracoke Assembly of God Church (OAGC), quickly depleted their food stock - serving 270 families in a 2-day period.


With an eye to the possibility that the island may be further impacted this year if a hurricane or even a nor’easter storm is forecasted, Chief Stotesberry felt that time was of the essence in restocking the Pantry. “Such an event could result in similar evacuations of the island and additional loss of income for business and residents,” he related.


“We want to help the Ocracoke community prepare for their future food needs by getting those Pantry shelves full again. By reaching out to the Mainland communities and asking our Volunteer Fire Departments, churches, and residents to help our neighbors and friends on the island, I’m sure we’ll have a successful drive,” Stotesberry said.


Stotesberry also indicated that he felt there would be other folks with a love of Hyde County but who reside elsewhere who would also want to help. Monetary donations (marked ‘Ocracoke Food Drive’) may be mailed to the SQVFD, PO Box 97, Swan Quarter, NC 27885.


Donation boxes have been set up at the following Mainland locations: In Swan Quarter: the Hyde County Government Complex (lobby), Chris’s Grocery, the NC Ferry Terminal, and the Swan Quarter VFD; in Engelhard: Spencer True Value Store and the Red and White Grocery; and in Ponzer: the Ruritan Club (front porch). Many Mainland churches will also be conducting drives within their churches and delivering items to the SQVFD. All items collected will be delivered to OAGC Pastor Ivey Belch and the volunteers who run the Pantry on the island.


Please contact Stotesberry at 252-542-0901 or for more information or to help with the food drive.