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Caldwell church working to address hunger in the community with new mini food pantry

Chriesman United Methodist Church set up a food pantry to help the community with some staples.
Published: Jul. 6, 2021 at 11:17 PM CDT
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CALDWELL, Texas (KBTX) - The Chriesman United Methodist Church in Caldwell is stepping up to address food insecurity in its neighborhood.

Cynthia Palomares is the Lay Pastor at the church. She says the church constantly works to help other communities after disasters, but decided to look within its own community at what needed to be done.

“We kind of had some difficult discussions about where we are really making an impact in the local community,” said Palomares. “And we decided that we could certainly do more, and we realized they were two needs here. One was improving literacy, and so we did put up a free library box around the corner from a local restaurant, and our second goal was to provide food staples for those who might be in need.”

The library was placed in front of Front Street Burgers about a year ago, and Palomares says it has been a great success. So, they decided to move forward with the food pantry.

The church teamed up with a local carpenter who built the mini box for free. It stands in front of the church, and inside the latch sits hygiene products, pasta, and other pantry staples.

“There are a lot of folks around here that are retired that may be on fixed incomes. There are also families that have children that are out of school for the summer, and also folks at work in the service industry who have really been impacted by the pandemic, so we want to provide those basic needs to the community,” said Palomares.

Front Street Burger owner Stacie Crocker says she loves seeing the community come by the mini library in front of her restaurant, and is grateful for the new pantry she says can be so impactful.

“It’s very important, especially in times like these because there’s so many people that are looking for work or unable to work because of their health,” said Crocker. “They’re just unable to make a good living and so it makes a big difference. You don’t have to worry about where your next meal comes from. You can just go right up to the pantry and they’ll help you out.”

According to Feeding America, about 15% of Burleson County experiences food insecurity. It is something Palomares says they are hoping to curb, even just a little bit.

“The policy is take what you need, leave what you can, and so folks can take what they need if they can’t leave anything that’s fine,” said Palomares. “That’s not part of the giving. God tells us to do two things, to love God and give love others. So this is our way of loving others, so please come take what you need for your family.”

The pantry open 24/7 and is located right out front of the church on the corner of Post Oak St. and Oak St. in Caldwell.

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