The McKeesport Agape Center exists to share the love of God in action to people in need.
Our calling is to strengthen families by overcoming food insecurity and providing a strategy for moving from crisis to long term sustainment.
Why We Exist
We change lives, one person at a time. It is our mission to help each person feel loved and supported by fulfilling their immediate food insecurity and basic needs and then moving them as far forward as we can with long-term solutions in a customized plan.
The McKeesport Agape Center (also known as Mission: Agape or “Agape”) was founded in 2019 after an existing Facebook community group “What’s Happening in White Oak,” based in the Pittsburgh suburbs of White Oak and Mckeesport, was frequently used for members to express basic needs for help. The founders, Kelly and Mike Doyle, quickly expanded Agape’s services from delivering care packages and fulfilling Facebook requests to operating a food pantry out of their home. News quickly spread of what the Doyles were doing, and other individuals, businesses, and the community started pouring out their support, enabling a location to be secured to meet the growing needs of Agape’s community outreach efforts.
In 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic hit making it even more difficult for those already struggling. Many people in poverty-stricken areas lack access to transportation or have illnesses with no support system, making it challenging to get to a food bank or utilize SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) in stores. The pandemic and fear of COVID further compounded these challenges. In response, Agape ramped up, purchasing a larger facility for operations and partnering with local organizations to increase food delivery and distribution services.
In addition to food services, Agape has programs for support with holiday meals and gifts for children, hygiene products for teens, back-to-school supplies, birthday cake supplies, clothing, bedding, household goods and emergency pet food needs.
Agape provides social services to help those in need eventually stand on their own, including making connections to appropriate agencies, credit counseling, resume writing, and peer mentoring.
Agape is very excited about its newest program, “Agape Purpose Place Youth.” This program includes after-school homework help, dinner, singing, dancing, and arts and crafts in a safe and supportive environment, as well as a weekly art therapy and youth choir practice! Bringing security and joy to these children can have the most significant impact on the community long term.