By Pamela Dozois

Valley Christian Fellowship is holding a OneMeal packing event from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Santa Ynez Christian Academy, 891 Refugio Road at Highway 246 across from Santa Ynez High School.

Following the event there will be a Christmas celebration that includes a soup lunch, bounce house and crafts, snow cones, a family photo booth, and an artificial snowball fight.

After the boxes are packed with food packets, members of OneMeal pick them up and they are shipped to various destinations all over the world.

According to statistics from the Kids Around the World website, one in seven kids in the world suffers from the effects of food insecurity, living in a chronic state of malnutrition. The OneMeal program ensures that tens of thousands of impoverished children have a warm, nutritious meal each day.

The OneMeal program has been in existence for the past 15 years serving impoverished communities throughout the world.

The church is raising $15,000 to purchase the food in bulk, which will then be measured and placed into small packets then sealed in an assembly-line fashion.

“We are hoping that 200 people will show up to help out,” said Casey Groves, Youth Pastor. “Anyone wishing to help with this event is welcome to join us.”

The participants will be packing 8,333 food packets, which is 50,000 meals. Each packet can feed 6 people and contains red lentils, rice, and a PhytoBlend, which is a combination of 24 essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.

Each packet contains red lentils, rice and a PhytoBlend that is a combination of 24 essential vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.

“You can eat this meal every day and be perfectly healthy,” said Jay Marshall, Senior Pastor at Valley Christian Fellowship. “It is designed to provide all the necessary nutrients for healthy growth.”

“My son, Chris Marshall, has been with Kids Around the World since 2005 and serves as the Vice President of Global Advancement. He has led teams of volunteers all over the world to provide outreach to children and communities that have known nothing but poverty, hunger, natural disaster, and war. They build playgrounds in many impoverished countries in order to bring hope to children around the world,” said Marshall.

“By bringing the playgrounds and the food into these Third World countries, it opens the door for children to learn about the Bible and God’s love for them. The local authorities get all the credit for providing the food and playgrounds and thus makes them more amenable to allow Christian workers to teach the Bible,” continued Marshall.

This is the first year that Valley Christian Fellowship has participated in this event and according to Marshall they don’t expect it to be their last. Their goal is to pack 232 boxes of food, which costs roughly $54 per box with shipping included. The food from this event will be going to an impoverished community in Peru.

“We anticipate that people will really enjoy this project and want to keep doing it in the future,” said Groves.

“Our church sponsors 10 different mission organizations. We give over $50,000 a year to support these missionaries. It’s highly unusual for a church our size to have produced so many missionaries, now 15 families teaching the word of God. A lot of our youth have become full-time Christian missionaries in countries around the world,” said Marshall.

“There are so many people in this valley who want to get behind causes that make a long-term difference. We not only want to feed the children physically, we want to feed them spiritually, knowing that the long-term power and strength is going to come from God,” said Marshall.

From Dec. 29 to Jan. 1, a group from Valley Christian Fellowship will go to an orphanage in Vencente, Mexico, to build a playground and to minister to the children. Families are welcome to attend.

Everyone in the valley is invited to join in the OneMeal packaging event or to make a donation to the program by visiting or calling 805-688-5171.

For more information about the OneMeal Program, visit