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Marketplace Manna’s Around the World Shop supports 27 partnerships around the world. Photo by Jeff Steers, JTV News.

(February 20, 2023 5:43 PM) Al and Diane Mellinger have spent years teaching others entrepreneurial skills through missionary work and their business Marketplace Manna’s Around the World Shop.

Now they are expanding their ideas with a workshop to provide income for low income residents and a space to create and learn.

The pair recently expanded Marketplace Manna’s from 151 E. Michigan Ave. to include 149  E. Michigan Ave (right next door) and will be converting the back half of their current location for the new REED Workshop Center.

REED is an acronym for Repurposing, Environmentally friendly, Economically beneficial, and Developing Skills. 

Al Mellinger said the goal is to have a dedication and fundraiser for the workshop in the next month and open before Easter. The fundraiser will be to purchase supplies to create products for the shop. The organization currently works with residents at the Jackson Interfaith Center and the John George Home to create products and earn supplemental income.

When the workshop opens, residents can come into the business.

Not only will the new REED Workshop space allow the Mellingers to train and employ some folks in need, but also offer seminars, lectures, and training on all kinds of subjects to those interested.  

“We will be recruiting volunteers to come and share one of their passions in a 1- to 2-hour period of time,” Mellinger said in a press release  “This might be with photography, history of Jackson, programming your cell phone, cooking for one, sing-a-longs or anything others like to do.”

The Mellingers work with 27 partnerships in 47 countries and the business is a 501(C)3 non-profit helping Church organizations around the world. 

Mellinger said he learned as a missionary worker in Bulgaria to empower others to create products for sale.

“We started in Bulgaria encouraging residents to make hats,” Al Mellinger said. “The problem was they made the hats faster than we could sell them.”

Hence, the creation of Marketplace Manna Around the World Shop. 

The shop is beginning its third year in downtown Jackson.

“Right now, we are moving at the speed of God,” Al said. 

Go to marketplace-mannas-around-the-world-shop.square.site for more information. 

The space at 151 E. Michigan Ave. will be expanded into a workshop at Marketplace Manna’s Around the World Shop. Photo by Jeff Steers, JTV News.
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