- Associated Press - Sunday, December 4, 2016

ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) - An idea of a free food pantry will come to life thanks to a Rochester woman.

Claire Buss was inspired by a similar concept in Arkansas to create the Little Free Pantry, which would provide food and toiletries for those in need, the Post-Bulletin (https://bit.ly/2frcjV6) reported.

Buss said she let the “wheels start turning” after she saw a website for the Little Free Library, which allows community members to freely borrow books.

With the Little Free Pantry, community members would be able to take nonperishable food and household goods, such as toothpaste and feminine products. Those with surplus supplies could leave them and those in need would be welcome to take them.

Buss, who works at a local hospital, said she sees a lot of homeless people and people who had food insecurity issues.

She also spoke to teachers who echoed her concerns, saying they told her “they have kids who don’t know where their dinner’s coming from, where their next meal is coming from, or if they’re going to have enough food over the weekend.”

“Adults are struggling, but there are kids in our community that are struggling, too,” Buss said.

The first pantry will be located at Forager Brewery by Dec. 11 and will be featured at a “pack the pantry” event.

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Information from: Post-Bulletin, https://www.postbulletin.com

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