Chicago woman helps the hungry, gives back to community - Fox 2 News Headlines

Chicago woman helps the hungry, gives back to community

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(Photos by FOX 32's Craig Wall) (Photos by FOX 32's Craig Wall)
Ulondia Johnson Ulondia Johnson
CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The food pantry at the Golden Gate Day Care Center is dear to Ulondia Johnson's heart.

"This is where we store our food, to pass out for the families, we have to restock again," said Johnson.

Earlier in her life, growing up in Chicago's Altgeld Gardens community on the city's south side, the food pantry was a lifeline for her and her three kids.

"I know how it feels to be hungry, and that's why I want to help to feed the hungry now and come back in this community because of the need of hunger, cause I know when you don't have food in your pantry when you open it up, that's a hurting thing when you have children saying to mom, what we gonna eat?," Johnson said.

For the past ten years, Johnson has worked at the day care center teaching kids in the community. She also helps with the food distribution each month for a dozen or so families struggling to put food on their tables.

"Oh, it feels great, that I know I can help a mother or father, somebody in this community, it feels great," Johnson added.

Johnson also volunteers each month at the Greater Chicago Food Depository, packing food for those in need. Giving back is her joy.

"Ulondia's spirit for what we do and for the mission of ending hunger in Chicago [is] unmatched," said Jim Conwell of the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

The depository calls Johnson one of their Champion Advocates.

"It's so inspiring and it's something that we see very often, someone who receives help from a food pantry or a soup kitchen or a shelter, when they're back on their feet, they want to give help and help out their neighbors in need," Conwell said.

Johnson still wishes she could help out even more.

"I'm grateful for the Food Depository, I'm really grateful," said Johnson. "I wish I was able to give back more [to] them."

The Greater Chicago Food Depository estimates one out of every six people in Chicago is at risk for being hungry. The agency is always in need of donations, money or food, as well as volunteers to help with the distribution effort.

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