Pantries help keep Virginia families from hunger in pandemic
Added 10-04-20 09:03:02am EST - “He is pen-on-paper squiggles are written promptly at 8 a.m., eyes darting from the Maruchan chicken-flavored ramen noodle soup leaned against the high-protein dog chow to the elbow macaroni inventory that's dwindled since he checked…” - Washingtontimes.com
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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - He is pen-on-paper squiggles are written promptly at 8 a.m., eyes darting from the Maruchan chicken-flavored ramen noodle soup leaned against the high-protein dog chow to the elbow macaroni inventory that’s dwindled since he checked the night before.
People often arrive at the Little Free Pantry - one of at least five pantries of free food in the Richmond area modeled after Little Free Libraries - planted outside his house under the cover of night. It’s added anonymity as they deal with a situation they didn’t think they’d find themselves in: unemployed, in a pandemic, with no money and no food, asking for help.
Russell Hicks marks what’s needed to make sure people are taken care of if they decide to swing back - noting the favorites of pancake mixes, canned spaghetti and meatballs, rice, and boxes of macaroni and cheese. Six months after putting up the box built by his neighbors and tucked inside a neighborhood near Chesterfield County Airport, he’s come to know what people are looking for.
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Then he closes the white-rimmed wooden cabinet doors, heads back up the driveway of the house he has shared with his wife, Lucy, for over 35 years - more than half of their 61 years of marriage - and lets the left-hand side of the pantry speak for itself: “Take what you need. Leave what you can.”
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