The Little Free Pantry is not a new concept. In fact, the program has been around since May of 2016. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the need for food during this trying time for so many people.

Dighton resident, Melissa Babey, came across many posts about people within her community seeking answers about food resources. She started to think about what she could do to help.

"I was initially inspired to do something when a person on one of the Dighton Facebook pages reached out to the community to see if there were resources around for food. Unfortunately, his is something we are seeing a lot of these days. On that day, I saw the community come together and hold an impromptu food drive for this family and any others that needed it. It got me thinking that we should do more."

Babey came across a project called Little Free Pantry, which is basically a free-standing mini pantry for anyone who needs it, stocked with non-perishable food, personal care items/paper products.

"Dighton has a food pantry that does a drive once a month, but what about when you are waiting for that or just get stuck? This is where this comes in. All too often these days, we see families working paycheck to paycheck just to survive, however with the pandemic, we have seen more and more people losing their jobs and not having that paycheck."

This pantry is located at Dighton Community Church.

“This pantry is for all, so if you know anyone who could use it, please let them know it is there. In this day and age, there is no need for food insecurity. At least this small community can make sure we take care of our neighbors. I am still working out the kinks in regards to donations and whatnot, but feel free to drive by and put something into the pantry. As it says, ‘take what you need, leave what you can.”

Babey is incredibly moved to see her efforts come to fruition in the town.

"I come from a single mom who worked three jobs to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. I learned my work ethic from her. If I can help even in a little way in the community, I am going to do it. I am glad it is up and it seems to be getting used as I just had to refill it today!"

The interesting thing about this initiative is that the site includes a Little Free Pantry map so you can find other Little Free Pantries near you. The Dighton location has not been added yet, but it will be included soon. As of right now, the only one listed on the SouthCoast is at “The Church of Our Savior Helping Hands Pantry” in Swansea. If you have one or know of one in your area, consider adding it to the map so that others in your community know how to find it.

Click HERE for acceptable items to donate in the winter months.

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