Chad Boddie practically grew up in the kitchen. “My husband is one the best chefs that I know,” said April. “At a very young age, he learned how to cook. He was always his grandmother’s assistant.” When Chad was about 13 years old, his grandmother got sick. He then became his grandmother’s “hands and feet” in the kitchen.
Although he’s a plumber by trade, Chad is the Director of Facilities for Madison at the Range, an assisted living facility. Most people never get to see him. After going in to work to check on things around 5 or 6 a.m., Chad heads to the Inner-City Church of Christ to prepare the food, long before people start arriving.
Despite having a heart and soul driving the food ministry, there is always a need for continued financial support. “We could not have made any of the cooking possible without the numerous donations from Churches of Christ and local companies,” said April. Pastor Timmy Smith at the Inner-City Church of Christ also provides a kitchen, as well as a location in which to serve.
The greatest hurdle in the face of COVID-19 is that of perception. “The biggest challenge to me is people seeing only certain jobs as an essential worker’s job,” said April. “We are essential workers and that is why we’re out here still working.” Everyone wears masks and follows the protocols that Governor Kay Ivey has set out for the citizens of Alabama. But, without a food ministry like the Boddies provide, many in the community would be struggling with an even greater problem: hunger.
Along with serving up heaping platefuls of kindness, food, and compassion, April Boddie has also imparted her wisdom and recipes to teens and young adults over the years. After a few suggestions and the realization that she will not be around forever, April decided to create her very own “guide to life” in the form of a paperback.
Her self-published book, “I Got 5 On It: Beating Around the Bush is for Landscapers.” is filled with practical wisdom, quotes, and of course, recipes. It is often taken for granted that everyone leaves the nest fully equipped with skills needed for the adult world. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. Boddie’s experience as a life-skills counselor tuned her focus to some of those basic skills that might be lacking in a teen or young adult’s life.
“It is my hope that “I Got 5 On It” will be to this generation the same thing that $5 was to me in my youth,” said April. “It was a little bit of ‘change’ that went a heck of a long way. The value of money has changed, but I pray my advice will be just as valuable as $5 was to me back then.”
“I want to show every child who grew up like I grew up that you can do something to put a ripple in the ocean of change,” said April.