Food for today, hope for tomorrow.
LOCATED RIGHT IN THE HEART OF BRUNSWICK, MAINE, is a hustling, bustling food pantry/soup kitchen, backpack program, mobile pantry, clothes closet/ furniture distribution center.
It’s easy to find – just go behind Hannaford’s to a group of modern, spacious buildings which were the result of a capital fund campaign about ten years ago. This pantry is nice enough to be the envy of many pantries I’ve seen. It was well planned and appears to be well maintained.
ATMOSPHERE – small town busy. Everyone appears to be grateful to be there. The pantry opens at 11:00 on Monday mornings. Wednesday mornings, Friday mornings, and Saturdays. The soup kitchen is open also so shoppers can get groceries and a meal at the same time.
SERVICE – Shoppers visit the pantry twice monthly. The first pantry week of the month offers each household a banana box of staples. The second pantry day offers a selection of fresh, refrigerated, and frozen vegetables and dairy products which are distributed by client choice.
SOUND LEVEL – The sound level is deceiving. There is a lot going on in this building but the noise level is quite low.
FOOD OFFERED – The selection depends quite a bit on the donations but on the day I visited, there were many gorgeous fresh vegetables to choose from: zucchini, bok choi, lettuce, beets. There was a small selection of yogurt and a good selection of bottled, refrigerated juices and milk. Bread was abundantly available in the pantry room itself as well as on a table in the hallway.
HOURS – This pantry opens Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Each distribution day is about four hours long.
USUAL WAIT TIME – Although shoppers were outside the building before the pantry opened, the wait time is not long.
HANDICAP ACCESS – Yes
TO DONATE TO THIS PANTRY – Send a check to Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program, Inc., 84A Union Street, Brunswick, Maine, 04011. If you want to make a food donation, the actual location is also 84A Union Street.
PANTRY AFFILIATION – To my knowledge, this pantry is a secular facility.
FINALLY – This pantry/soup kitchen is a lovely facility operated by by over 250 caring staff and volunteers. This is definitely one operation which strengthens the entire community which it serves by feeding those who are the most vulnerable.
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Peace and food for all.