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Detroit man behind food pantry that feeds the soul of his community

Detroit man behind food pantry that feeds the soul of his community
Detroit man behind food pantry that feeds the soul of his community 03:00

(CBS DETROIT) - Every Tuesday and Thursday, a group of people with Moorish Blessed Hands Food Pantry gather on Detroit's west side.

The pantry is powered by a mini-infantry of volunteers with the sole purpose of feeding their community.  

The man leading their mission is Minister Fuqua Bey of the Moorish Science Temple of America No. 25.

Bey and his team provide what they call "a blessing in a bag" for the community. Their bags are full of essential food like fruits and vegetables. 

"We've been doing it for over 20 years," Bey said.

Bey describes himself as a first responder on the frontlines of the city's ongoing hunger crisis.

"It's a problem when people don't have enough to make it to paycheck to paycheck," he said.

Bey's food pantry is located on Wyoming and Puritan, which is an area made up of low-income residents. He says this part of the west side community is a food desert.

The issue of poverty was brought to light even more during the COVID-19 pandemic when Bey says the need was more than anyone could have imagined.

"Sometimes, we were giving away 2,500 meals a week," he said. 

Bey says he and his team gave away over 100,000 meals during the pandemic.  

Fast forward to now, those going hungry are still in need. And when there is nowhere else to turn, the community comes to Bey's food pantry. 

At the pantry, cars line up outside, with some waiting more than an hour to get their hands on much-needed food.

"There are so many seniors on such a low income that they have to buy dog food instead of the regular food for people," said Mittie Frost. 

Frost says she knows people who buy dog food instead of human food to save money.

For Frost and others, the pantry is a saving grace.

"This will help me a lot," she said. This helps a lot."

The pantry is only one part of what Bey does. Sometimes, you can find him in other areas of the city and beyond, going directly to communities and passing out hot meals to the homeless.

He also gives away coats, formula for infants and other essentials. 

For information on the food pantry, email Bey at

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