Augusta County Library’s Fishersville branch opens ‘Little Free food Pantry’

Published: May. 1, 2023 at 11:28 AM EDT
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FISHERSVILLE, Va. (WHSV) - Little Free pantries are filled with food and other items, and can be found in communities all around the Shenandoah Valley. Now one sits just outside of the Augusta County Library’s Fishersville branch, all in the hopes of helping community members of all ages with hunger.

“People don’t have to feel embarrassed they can come and go as they please and it’s just a way to kind of help out the community because we have books and library materials inside the library, so while they’re here they can stop and grab some food on the way out,” ACL Fishersville branch manager Douglas Keith said.

Keith says a couple of months ago, the library was approached by Trishia and Chaz Fillion of the nonprofit the Neighbor Bridge with an idea for a little free pantry.

“We try to stock this with meal items like we’ve got peanut butter, jelly, and bread and some soups and some pastas and stuff,” Trishia Fillion said.

The Fillions are working to put the pantries all around the Augusta County area, part of their ‘neighbors helping neighbors’ mission.

“We don’t want any family in the area to not have dinner when they go home. Also the Brite Bus stop is right here at this branch, so those that have transportation barriers could actually have a meal as well,” the Fillions said.

The box was built by Bear Creek Outdoor Living, and in the two weeks it’s been up over 60 pounds of food have gone in and out of its little doors. On top of donations of food, Keith says the library will be taking books to provide free reading materials.

“We’re actually providing a different resource to our library patrons, or even if they might not be library patrons people in the community going through a hard time, having a rough day bridge that gap of meeting peoples’ needs beyond answering direct questions or providing library materials,” Keith said.

Donations of non-perishable food items and books can be dropped off at the Augusta County Library during operating hours or can be stocked directly on the pantry shelves.

For more information on the Fishersville branch, you can visit the ACL website here.