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Boca Raton woman creates free neighborhood food pantries

Posted at 10:08 AM, Nov 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-11 20:11:40-05

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Chances are, you’ve heard of or seen a "little free library." It’s a box often found in neighborhood streets offering people a free way to exchange books.

A Boca Raton woman took that concept and is using it to make sure people in our communities don’t go hungry.

Those who know her call her contagious, but Summer Faerman spreads good things and positive vibes.

"I am the person who wants to save the world with each and every project. This is just one of my projects," said Faerman, a longtime resident of Boca Raton and the director of The Meryl and Ron Gallatin TLC program at B’nai Torah Congregation.

Faerman is talking about the TLC Little Free Pantry. As an American, witnessing food insecurity is not something she is willing to do.

"We have so much food and I see so much waste. How could there possibly be a hungry person and how could there be a hungry person a mile from my house?" said Faerman.

The concept of the pantry is simple: if you have something, leave it. If you need something, take it. No judgement, no questions and no contact is necessary.

"It’s such a beautiful, beautiful thing and we know that we are helping and you don’t have to spend $500 at the grocery store," said Faerman.

At any given time, within a small cupboard atop a post on the side of the road, you can find things like Cheerios, mac and cheese, salt and pepper, even candy. All little things that can go a long way. The first pantry is near low income housing and one block away from a Title 1 school. Faerman sees the children taking advantage of the communities kindness all the time.

"A child is going to have a full belly to do school or they’re going to be able to put their head on their pillow at night and they’re not going to be having a bed time story of a rumbling tummy," said Faerman.

With the help of friends who can build, the program is growing and Faerman’s dreaming can continue.

"It’s a field of dreams. If you build it they will come," Faerman said.

Faerman hopes to expand the program throughout Florida. There are already three in Boca Raton. One is right by the Salvation Army on Southwest 2nd Avenue, the other is on East Yamato by the Advent Early Childhood School, and the third one just went up at 200 Ruby Street.

Three more will be installed this week to coincide with World Kindness Day, which is Nov. 13.

If you would like to donate or get involved, click here.