LITTLE PANTRY SCORES BIG ON NUMBERS
“We serve an average of 200 families at any given point,” Mimi said, “and over the seven years since we opened, more than 700 families have relied on the pantry during difficult times.” That works out to about nine percent of the county’s population, roughly equal to the U.S. Census estimate on residents at or below the poverty level. Some clients just need help when an emergency puts an extra strain on finances or when the cupboard starts to run bare.
Mimi knows customers by name and circumstances, and when she’s missed a familiar face for weeks and weeks, she’ll note the absence. Usually, the response is, “Oh, I was doing okay. You need to save the help for those who really need it.”
Every month, the pantry’s supporting markets contribute 500-600 pounds of food. That’s matched and raised by donations from local individuals and groups, who gave a total of 111,644 pounds of food last year. Then there’s 29,457 pounds of Pepperidge Farm bread that Steve Welch from Flint Hill has added since July 1, 2012. (He’s given more – he’s been a supporter since the doors first opened. That’s just his tally since the pantry gained its independence.)