The pantry served about 50 families at its latest distribution, but has served more than two dozen new individuals and families in April alone.
WEST BRIDGEWATER — Pull up your car, pop your trunk and roll down your passenger window.
365体育官网Those are the guidelines people are met with as they arrive at the Spring Street Elementary School.
During the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the school's parking lot is empty — aside from two times a month when it is the home of the West Bridgewater Food Pantry.
The food pantry distributes food to families in need twice a month — on the first and third Wednesday of each month. But in a time when nonessential businesses have closed, forcing many businesses to lay off or furlough employees, the pantry has seen a large increase in demand.
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Calvin Gray, the food pantry's director, said 10 new people signed up at the first distribution in April and well over a dozen more signed up on Wednesday.
365体育官网The food pantry now has about 80 families on its distribution list, but Gray said not everyone shows up every week. On Wednesday, about 50 families were served.
365体育官网"One bag is all dry types of food. Another bag is perishables, like margarine, milk, eggs, chicken," Gray said. "This week we gave five-pound bags of potatoes, three-pound bags of apples, onions, carrots, cookies. They get a pretty good amount of food."
365体育官网The food will last a varying amount of time depending on the size of the family, Gray said. For some, it can last up to two weeks — the amount of time between most distributions, except in April, when Gray noted there will be a three-week gap before the next one because there are five Wednesdays in the month.
"Usually it's probably a two-week supply," Gray said. "But they still need to subsidize some food probably, depending upon the individuals."We can deliver news just like this directly to your inbox. You can sign up for This Just In (a daily 7:30 p.m. newsletter with items we've posted that day), News Alerts (so you don't miss anything important) and more. It's customized to your preferences -- and it'll only take a few seconds.
Volunteers who fill the bags for individuals or families and put them in the vehicles of those who show up at distributions are wearing gloves and masks because of concerns over COVID-19.
365体育官网Residents do not need to apply in advance. Any West Bridgewater resident can show up at the bimonthly distributions, as long as they have proof of residence. Gray said anyone who is new receives a form to fill out that they can bring back to the next distribution they show up at so the pantry has a record of who they are serving.
"There's definitely a higher demand," Gray said.
365体育官网The distribution each month is from 3 to 4:30 p.m. on those first and third Wednesdays at the Spring Street Elementary School, at 2 Spring St. The next one is scheduled for May 6.
For more information, call the food pantry at 339-987-1684.
Senior reporter Cody Shepard can be reached by email at email@example.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @cshepard_ENT.