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‘Tiny Food Pantry’ at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church

PHOTO PROVIDED St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Blesses and Inaugurates a free Tiny Food Panty. Shown, from left, are Canon Daniel Selvage, Daniel Irvin, Bishop Audrey Scanlan, Peggy Adams with children from St. Paul’s Sunday school.

LOCK HAVEN — There’s a small-scale movement starting to take hold in churches of various denominations across the country. Think of those “little free library” boxes, but with a twist: These are small pantries stocked with free food and sometimes personal care items for people in need.

There’s now one in Lock Haven!

It’s located on the property of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, at 112 E. Main Street. It has been placed on the public parking lot side of the downtown church and the church calls it “A Tiny Food Pantry.”

“We felt like this was something that we could do – something small that would benefit so many people of our community,” said Dr. Charles Foulsham, M.D., who originally proposed the idea to the parish leadership. The idea captured the interest of the church, and it was decided that St. Paul’s would move forward to bring this valuable ministry to our community.

The pantry itself is constructed of wood with a shingled roof, and it has several shelves designed to hold various items of nonperishable food and other daily essentials. It was constructed by Daniel Irvin, a member of Boy Scout Troop #66 of Woolrich. Daniel undertook the project to fulfill the requirements needed to earn his Eagle Scout award, and he is to be congratulated for a job well-done.

There’s a door on the front of the box but no lock, so anyone can take what they need 24/7. Initially, St. Paul’s Church will be providing all of the food. But as word spreads they are hoping donations from the community will begin to pour in.

The basic principle governing the use of the pantry is “take what you need – leave what you can!”

“We have no idea how often the pantry will need to be restocked,” said the Rev. Canon Daniel Selvage, priest-in-charge, at St. Paul’s. “However, we expect that the turnover will be brisk, indicating that the need in our area is tremendous.”

All of the items in the pantry are free and there are no forms to fill out. Those using the pantry are free to come and go as they wish.

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