In 1994, an adult Sunday school class at Natural Steps Baptist Church felt God leading them to start a community project. The project was to provide food to needy families in our local community. Realizing this project was too big for one small church to handle, other local churches were invited to participate.
A meeting was called with the local churches and each church agreed to participate. From this meeting a committee was appointed to find a location and to seek help in organizing the process of getting food out to the needy families. Forms were filled out to obtain food from both the Arkansas Food Bank and the Rice Depot. The local volunteer fire department had recently built a new building and agreed to lease their former site to the RCC for a whopping one dollar per year.
Since we were serving such a large area and our building was located in Roland, Arkansas the name Roland Crisis Closet was chosen. Contributions from our church partners allowed us to purchase food for our first Crisis Closet clients.
The first day the Crisis Closet opened they served 14 families and the only meat they had to give was a can of Spam. Quickly the number of families we served increased. As we grew we realized our clients had a need for clothing and household items. Church members were asked to donate good used clothing as well as household items and along with the food, these became a routine part of the RCC’s services.
The RCC served clients for several years in the ‘old’ Roland Fire Department building until being informed the building was needed again by the fire department. We needed to relocate quickly. God provided Winfield Methodist Church who offered two of their Sunday School classrooms and soon RCC was back in the business of serving the needy in the community.
After three years of serving our clients at Winfield Methodist Church, New Hope Baptist Church offered the RCC a large portable building. It was moved to a location in Natural Steps where we are still located today. We are currently in the process of acquiring land and building a permanent home for the Roland Crisis Closet. As God has continually provided for us during the last 25 years, we are sure that he will continue to provide as we move into this next phase.