For most Americans, this will be a different Independence Day. Fewer communities will have fireworks displays, and millions are still in the midst of a very serious economic collapse that hit before many had time to even recover from the last tragedy.

I'm thinking about a single mother who recently came to our "Farmers to Families" outreach on the Florida Panhandle. She's an IT professional who holds a Master's degree. Her house was destroyed back when Hurricane Michael hit and sadly (like far too many) she is still wrestling with her insurance company to get the proper settlement. The home's electrical system is still in disarray, and she and her three kids sleep in one bedroom because there are so many leaks in the roof. Then COVID hit and she was forced to resign from her full-time job to work from home so she could take care of her children.

+ + "We've been forgotten"... but Mercy Chefs will not forget!

This mom had heard about Mercy Chefs during our Michael response, so she decided to come by one of our recent food box distributions. As she arranged to take several food boxes for her elderly neighbors who simply would not be able to come out due to the heat and humidity, she turned to our team and thanked us. She was amazed that the Mercy Chefs team would come from across the country to make sure that she and her neighbors were not forgotten -- especially when so many in her community have felt forgotten...

"We have been forgotten by our own state," she told our team. "No one really knows what we have to endure on a daily basis. They would be shocked -- horrified -- by our 'normal.'"

+ + Someone cared enough...

Her words pierced our staff's hearts. There is still so much pain, and yet by providing meals during this time of prolonged crisis, we helped this mom feel not so alone... not as forgotten. Someone cared enough to come to her town and provide high-quality food. And other friends from across the country -- faithful partners like you -- cared enough to make a contribution to sponsor those meals.

This is why we do what we do! This is why Mercy Chefs is continuing to provide tens and hundreds of thousands of meals every week -- more than a MILLION since the coronavirus crisis began!

As we head into this holiday weekend, we urgently need support from friends like you! Unbelievably, we are now deep into the fourth month of this crisis, and there still is no end in sight. Would you partner with us this July 4th weekend to help a fellow American who is struggling right now? Go here to make your tax-deductible gift:

I share stories like this because I know it's unlikely that you will ever personally meet those that you are helping through Mercy Chefs. We have that privilege. We hear the cries of the hearts of those who are hurting. And we see the tears of gratitude on the faces of those whose lives has been made a little bit brighter by a meal given in love.

There's much more work to do and so many more people to help. This month, we'll provide hundreds of thousands more meals, and your support will help make each and every meal possible. Thank you so much!

As we celebrate our nation's Independence, may God bless you, and may God bless this great land!

Gary LeBlanc, Mercy Chefs

P.S. At one of our locations, we already have nine trucks lined up for food distributions that will carry us through this entire month and beyond. In many areas, the need is not letting up. Again, I fully expect that Mercy Chefs will provide hundreds of thousands of meals this month alone! We need about 250 friends to step forward this holiday weekend just to help us keep pace with the meals we will distribute over the next week. As the Lord leads, please go here to help, and thanks in advance:

(If you prefer to send your gift by check, go here for mailing instructions.)