The Little Free Pantry

The Little Free Pantry idea began in the United States. Someone saw a need in their community to help provide the poor and marginalized the necessities of life. They wanted something that those in need could go to for free and without obligation; as if they could go into someone’s pantry and take what they need. Thus, the Little Free Pantry was born.

The concept is this: build a small outdoor pantry and fill it with things those in need may be able to use, such as non-perishable food, bus tickets, toothbrushes, deoderant and on-the-go snacks. The pantry is placed on the edge of your private property, available to those who need it. Note that you cannot build a Little Free Pantry on city property or someone else’s private property. Doing so is illegal and it will be taken down.

Little Free Pantry’s are incredibly easy to put together. You can make them out of recycled wood or new wood. Either way, make sure that they are insulated and have a door that can securely close during winter months. Filing your pantry is as simple as picking up supplies from a dollar store. However, you can also reach out to local businesses to see if they will donate products to you. Just make sure anything in the pantry is durable and appropriate.

The whole point of a Little Free Pantry is that there are no security measures in the way of it being accessed during times of need. Unfortunately this means that there is the risk of it being vandalized or supplies taken by those who do not actually need them. This is unavoidable. However, based on the available statistics of existing Little Free Pantry’s, this rarely happens and the risk is well worth it.

Still on the fence? Go visit Suzanna Delaine at Ascending Koi Tattoo on Edmonton Trail in the northeast of Calgary. She built a Little Free Pantry and fell in love with the project. She is a great person to talk to if you are interested in building your own.

Spread a little love this spring and consider helping your community by building a Little Free Pantry!

Your Real Estate Professional,

Ken Richter

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