Sixth “Little Free Pantry” set up in Fairfield to provide food to those in need

No paperwork involved, just grab what you need.
Published: Oct. 12, 2020 at 8:17 PM CDT
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FAIRFIELD, Iowa (KYOU) - It’s the sixth one in Fairfield - a “Little Food Pantry”, where people can come to give or get food donations. Fairfield’s a town with a poverty rate of around 16% and where 40% of students receive a reduced or free school lunch. So this pantry project - organized by Deb Pogel - seeks to combat that in an unobtrusive manner. You can take what you need, no paperwork involved. Bob Ferguson, who has a pantry outside of his home, says “there’s hunger in our town. It’s not really visible, but it’s there. [These pantries] are an expression of us taking care of each other.”

This latest pantry is set up outside of Sieda Community Action. It had a lot of hands involved with it: a builder, a painter, construction, maintenance, and planning. And of the six people who came out to see it set up, all of them seemed to care about getting their community fed.

Sandy Simpson, for instance, who also has a pantry at her home, and painted the pantry at Sieda, has seen firsthand the positive impact of these free pantries: “I’ve seen a single mom with children. I’ve seen them pull up and kids get out and grab things and jump back in the car. And students have been coming by and thanking me. It’s a bandaid, but it’s a nice one.”

And while the area has more official organizations like the Lord’s Cupboard, these pantries are easy and simple to access on the way to work or school. The six pantries are set up all across the city, from as far north as Maharishi International University, to the south of town, near OB Nelson Park.

And Bob Ferguson sums it up nicely when he says “when you’ve got six or eight of these around town, and a family needs food...they can find food.”

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