Monroe, NC and Spartanburg, SC – AFL, an international manufacturer and provider of engineering and installation services, awarded a $2,000 grant to the Community Shelter of Union County (CSUC) located in Monroe, North Carolina to support its mobile pantry program. Made possible by AFL’s Community Outreach Program, the grant will provide approximately 800 meals to the community.

“With our 28-year history of providing emergency shelter, food and rehousing, we know very well the tough choices a family can face between making rent and paying for food or other basics,” explained Melissa McKeown, Executive Director of the Community Shelter of Union County. “As the moratorium on evictions will end soon, we are bracing for a flood of need. The grant from AFL will provide flexibility to supplement our existing food pantry and provide perishable foods and other items needed for families.”

The Community Shelter’s mobile pantry serves Union County residents who suffer food instability. The program commenced by supporting a nearby church that was unable to keep up with the demand. The effort needed a larger facility to manage the long car lines and that led to CSUC adopting the program. In the fiscal year ending July 31, the Community Shelter served 370,462 meals through the mobile pantry, a 203 percent increase from the previous fiscal year, and fed 937 unduplicated individuals through their dining hall that was scaled back to those living in the Shelter. The Shelter expects a ramp-up of individuals being served in the dining hall when Covid restrictions ease.

“The pandemic has increased the need for food in our community and while non-perishables are available at several organizations, perishables are much more difficult to find,” commented Seneca Mullins, Senior Vice President of AFL’s Enterprise Services. “We have supported the Community Shelter for several years and are pleased to provide this grant to strengthen the mobile pantry program and fulfill this need for families in our community.”

The Community Shelter of Union County provides food, emergency shelter and rapid rehousing instruction for individuals and families in need. The Shelter commenced operations in 1985 and at that time, had capacity for 15 male clients. Since then, the Shelter has tripled its capacity, moving from a 7,000 square foot facility to a newly constructed 20,000 square foot two-building campus, increasing the number of beds and the dining space.

AFL’s Community Outreach Program includes grants, sponsorships, volunteer and environment initiatives, disaster relief, scholarships and more. For additional information on AFL, its products and services, visit

About AFL
Founded in 1984, AFL is an international manufacturer providing end-to-end solutions to the energy, service provider, enterprise and industrial markets as well as several emerging markets. The company’s products are in use in over 130 countries and include fiber optic cable and hardware, transmission and substation accessories, outside plant equipment, connectivity, test and inspection equipment, fusion splicers and training. AFL also offers a wide variety of services supporting data center, enterprise, wireless and outside plant application.

Headquartered in Spartanburg, SC, AFL has operations in the U.S., Mexico, Canada, Europe, Asia and Australia, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. For more information, visit Follow us on LinkedInXFacebook, and read our blog.

Christina Blount
Community Outreach Coordinator, AFL

Corie Culp
Public Relations Manager, AFL