You can find a variety of free pantries that have sprung up around Vancouver, as they have in other regions of the world. These pantries allow people to take whatever they need or leave something if they have something to donate. From socks and cans of soup to pens and paper, tomato sauce, and pasta, there are many things to find that people leave for one another.
During the pandemic there were many new individuals and families that had to turn to finding food banks in there own area. Last year was one of the most challenging years for Food Banks Canada as well as other organizations around the country that saw a dramatic rise in demand for services.
Food banks around Canada and other countries had been essentially overrun during the pandemic because of the demand and this meant that other solutions would be needed.
In comes the food pantries that have sprung up in different neighborhoods now. These food pantries are a community project that enables people to give what they have to try and help others in the area. There are many struggling to get by and these free food pantries can supplement some of the things that they might need.
The food pantries are similar to the little library boxes that have also sprung up in different communities over the last several years. These little library boxes give people the chance to drop off a few books or take some to read and give back later on. This is a great opportunity for people to get access to books that might not be close to a library or another option, and it is a way to give back to the community too.
Now that library box idea has sprung into even more, with food pantries coming to the Metro Vancouver area. There is a need and people who are looking and willing to try and fill that void for those in Vancouver and other areas.
The food pantries are a grassroots movement that has grown around the United States, Canada, and elsewhere. People are looking for convenient and creative ways to try and give back to others during the pandemic and these boxes enable people in the community to be able to do that. Anyone who needs something can just come up and take it without asking any questions.
There is a certain level of trust that is established with this system, and sometimes the boxes have been looted or vandalized, but they’re still going strong to help communities in multiple jurisdictions and now even in Vancouver too.
A Chance to Give Back
There are food banks and other organizations in BC and around Canada that desperately need help these days with trying to meet demand. Another opportunity to give back would be to find those free food pantries, because there might be some boxes in your own community, and you could look to put some donations in them for others. From clean socks to perfume, canned soup, a loaf of bread, a brush or a box of tissue, there are many things that could be included that people might be missing or unable to afford.
24/7 Access to Food
One great thing about the little free food pantries in Vancouver and elsewhere is that they are open whenever someone needs them, any time during day or night. This isn’t the same experience that you might get when dealing with other food banks and charitable organizations, the food pantries offer immediate access to food when people might need it. The little free food pantries are a clear sign of what it looks like to see people in Vancouver helping other people in their own communities.