OKLAHOMA -- Feed the Children, the 10th largest charity in the U.S., founded by Larry and Frances Jones 25 years ago, has opened an exhibit in Oklahoma City, featuring 25 years of accomplishments and relief work made by the organization in the name of Christ. Titled, “A Story of Hope,” the exhibit displays 8,000 square feet of photos, awards, and first-hand accounts of the experiences of the founders.
“Frances and I have met and helped literally hundreds of thousands of people during the last 25 years,” said Larry Jones. “We wanted to share our story, the story of Feed The Children, in a way that we had never done before. This exhibit, which we call A Story of Hope, is just that – the story of hope that we have been able to provide while acting as the arms and legs of those who want to help.”
One of the highlights over the years of service provided by Feed the Children include its partnership with the National Basketball Players Association. The photos tell a story of professional athletes and their willingness to reach out to hungry children and their families.
With the NBPA and volunteers from The Abyssinian Baptists Church Feed the Children launched its largest food distribution at that time, which was last year’s Christmas.
Two other big relief works involved included September 11 and the overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001. The display, “Faces of Afghanistan,” features the Feed the Children photographer’s haunting images of the Afghan people they encountered.
“You go to a place like this and you know right up front that your problems are miniscule. You really don’t have problems,” David Fitzgerald, the photographer, said.
One last crisis that can’t be erased from the hearts of Oklahomans is the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal building, which was located just blocks north of where the museum operates. Feed The Children was providing relief to the victims from the disaster and they received thousands of letters from children across America to the children of Oklahoma City.
“In a period of two to three weeks, we received over 30,000 letters,” said Frances Jones in her introduction to “A Circle of Love,” a published compilation of many of those poems, letters and drawings. “Their simple, yet ofttimes mature, expressions of comfort and compassion allowed us to stay focused and functioning during the nightmare following the disaster.”
Feed the Children continues to remain one of the most actively involved Christian humanitarian group in fight against hunger around the world and across the nation. In 2003, Feed The Children shipped 61 million pounds of food and 22 million pounds of other essentials to children and their families in all 50 states and in 62 foreign countries.