BURLINGTON, Maine — The Burlington Food Pantry is a small pantry in Penobscot county that serves hundreds of people. However, its doors might close if it doesn't get the donations needed to build a new facility.
The facility where the Burlington Food Pantry currently sits was initially loaned to the pantry's organizer Maureen Bean and other volunteers to help distribute much-needed food to community members. Now, the owner of the property has other plans for it.
Fortunately, Bean was offered a piece of land to keep the effort going, but she needs money to build a new facility on that land.
"We have families who are coming, and they are coming consistently, 65 to 85 families, and I look at our roster, and these families are coming again, and again, and again and again, so it makes me know that there is a need here," said Bean.
For the past year, the food pantry has been open every other week serving approximately 85 households each time. Families receive a box of food that includes meat, produce, cereal, canned goods, dairy items, pasta, and other food staples.
"We are helping... a little less than 300 people," said Bean.
Many residents in the area depend on it. A woman named Serena tells NEWS CENTER Maine, "This summer my husband was between jobs, and we had no money coming in, nothing."
"They always have a lot of food, good food...and they keep us going," adds Patti Lambert.
"I don't know what we'll do without them, I really don't," said Teresa Pelky. "If I could save 50 dollars here in groceries, it's 50 dollars that helps me keep the lights on, or keep fuel in my tank, keep the heat on."
Now, the pantry is looking for help financing its new facility, so that it may continue to help others.
"Now we need a place to call Burlington Food Pantry a home, a roof over our heads so we can continue to do what we are doing," said Bean.
"We've been offered an acre of land that we could put a building on, but we need a building to put on it!" said Bean.
Bean says they receive lots of food, they have the volunteers, and lots of community members who are willing to help distribute the food.
What they need is $30,000 to start a new building from scratch.
"If we weren't here where would they go? Where would they get their food? and we want to keep that going!" said Bean.
"Don't ever feel that you are putting a burden on somebody, we all run in tough times, and it's nice to have a place like this where you can turn to," says Burlington resident Russell Loveland.
The Burlington food pantry's organizer just started a Go Fund Me page.
To donate and help them build a new facility, you can click here.