DO YOU KNOW?
There are households in our community who do not have the means to purchase personal hygiene and cleaning supplies. This means no toothpaste, no shampoo, no laundry detergent, no bath soap. This also means no toilet paper, no paper towels, no feminine hygiene products, no diapers.
NONE OF THESE ITEMS CAN BE PURCHASED WITH FOOD STAMPS
Community Pantry was founded in 1999 by local individuals with the guidance of Community Partnership to meet this need. It gained non-profit status in 2000. Initially items were collected and given to clients. This became unwieldy, so the decision was made to distribute vouchers on a monthly basis, giving the individual the choice in what items to “buy”. Each month Community Pantry provides monthly $30 vouchers to Rabun County individuals and families.
Community Pantry serves low-income working families with children, disabled persons, the elderly on fixed incomes, emergency cases, and families in transition. Clients qualify through recommendations from local ministers, physicians and social service agencies (9th District). They re-qualify periodically, and happily, many are able to leave the program as their situation improves.
Community Pantry is run by a Board of Directors and Advisory Board; all are volunteers, representing many faiths. Additional volunteers help on voucher days and also work fund-raising events. Monies are raised through an annual letter-writing campaign, donations from churches and benefactors, grants, donation collection boxes and selling food at local events.
In the beginning Community Pantry served 25 families. Today it assists 350 families, and the need continues to grow! No other organization, private or government sponsored, provides this service.