Communities Are Turning Mini Neighborhood Libraries Into Food Pantries For Those Struggling

Little Free Libraries in communities across the nation have been turned into food pantries with canned goods and toilet paper.

Canned food is stacked up.
Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Little Free Libraries in communities across the nation have been turned into food pantries with canned goods and toilet paper.

Many communities across the nation are turning their local mini neighborhood libraries, known as Little Free Libraries, into mini food pantries to help those who may be struggling in this time of global health crisis caused by the coronavirus. This mini cabinets, which were once used to hold books to be shared and returned, now fulfill a very different need, according to Tank’s Good News.

Little Free Libraries became a nationwide phenomenon in 2016. Since then, more than 75,ooo of them have popped up throughout the country. While they all look different in style and design, they are each intended to be a way for people to share their favorite books with others in their community using the honor system. Because of the coronavirus, these mini libraries have since been emptied out and filled with groceries.

The idea is to not only assist those that might be out of work and struggling to afford food, but those who may be particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus and do not want to put themselves at risk by going to the supermarket.

Shelly Anderson of Woodbury, Minnesota is among those who have taken up the task of keeping her local Little Free Library stocked with necessities. Not only has it been beneficial to the community but it has been a great learning experience for her young children to understand the value of helping those in need.

“My kids have invested a lot of time into just making sure there’s stuff up there. The experience for them being able to be a part of something that gives back. That’s really cool,” she said.

Jessica McClard, in Arkansas, has also joined in on this project. She emphasized how essential these mini pantries are to helping promote social distancing during this time of great challenges.

“This concept is made for this moment because we can maintain social distancing and also, there are a lot of people hurting right now. Arkansas is perpetually one of the more food-insecure states. I really hoped that the Little Free Library concept was familiar enough with folks that people would know what to do with it, and it would be something that would get duplicated rather quickly. And that’s what happened.”

As The Inquisitr previously reported, individuals all around the nation have stepped up to the plate to help the vulnerable members of the community during this time of social distancing. Volunteers in New York have even begun shopping for and delivering groceries to the elderly and vulnerable members of the community so they don’t have to go to supermarket.