As of July 1, HOP eligibility has expanded to include NC Medicaid members who have Tailored Plans through Vaya Health or Partners Health Management.

Neighbors Feeding Neighbors


Meeting Community Needs with Compassion

When Alan and Amy Hoilman founded Neighbors Feeding Neighbors in Mitchell County, it was with one goal in mind: to treat their neighbors like they would want to be treated themselves.

In 2018, a series of unexpected life events reminded the Hoilmans of a time earlier in their marriage when they needed support with basic necessities. This time around, however, they were the ones extending a helping hand. They decided to turn their living room into a food pantry, which they quickly outgrew as word got out.

“There are four things that guide all of our work,” Alan shares. “Love, kindness, compassion and prayer. We prayed to find a space and the resources to meet the needs of our community.”

Their prayers were answered when a fellow community member donated a building and, to Alan’s surprise, a barn, which together provide plenty of room for shared community meals, donations, and a store that supports their outreach ministry. This past year alone, Neighbors Feeding Neighbors provided more than 690,000 pounds of food through their pantry, community meals, and healthy food boxes.

The Hoilmans have a saying, “The first time you meet us, you’re a visitor; the second time, you’re family.” When folks arrive on their doorstep, they often have more than one need. Alan and Amy have found themselves giving away not only the shirt off their back but also their shoes, tools, furniture, and firewood – whatever they can give. “People here have lived to learn with almost nothing,” Alan explains.

The Healthy Opportunities Pilot is helping them meet more of these needs for individuals living in Michell and surrounding counties. Through HOP, Neighbors Feeding Neighbors can now provide transportation to a community meal, the grocery store and other health-related activities. They can also assist with badly needed home repairs and modifications that are critical for the health and wellbeing of many of their neighbors like Jessica.

After leaving an abusive relationship, Jessica moved with her children into a home that was overrun with pests and lacked reliable water. Her children were falling ill frequently, and she was beginning to feel as broken as the pipes in her home. She was surprised to learn that, as a Medicaid managed care member, she might qualify for assistance through the Healthy Opportunities Pilot.

Once enrolled, Neighbors Feeding Neighbors was able to provide Jessica with healthy food boxes and clean bedding. They also helped her find an exterminator. Jessica recently told Alan she was hopeful again after believing for so long that no one cared.
Jessica’s reaction was not lost on Alan, who was initially surprised by the support he received from Impact Health, the network lead managing the pilot program.

“The most rewarding thing about HOP is being able to meet our neighbors’ needs better,” Alan shares. “I didn’t expect to discover that the people running this pilot care about our community too. That makes all the difference.”

“The most rewarding thing about HOP is being able to meet our neighbors’ needs better.”

–Alan Hoilman, Co-founder, Neighbors Feeding Neighbors

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