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On November 12, the Village of Romeoville added another food pantry option for residents, courtesy of Girl Scout Troop 71503. The micro pantry is located inside the Romeoville branch of the White Oak Library (201 W. Normantown Road) near bathrooms. This pantry, and micro pantries in general, allow for people in need to anonymously pick up food and also serves as a drop off point for those who wish to donate food. The 4’ by 3’ wooden box with shelves and a door contains non-perishable food items and other necessities like diapers.
“We are thrilled by the opportunity to partner with local Girl Scout Troop 71503,” said White Oak Library Director Scott Pointon. “This micro food pantry will serve the residents of Romeoville for many years to come and is a perfect complement to the wonderful services the library provides to the community.”
The idea to set up a micro pantry came when the girls of Troop 71503 were working towards completing their Bronze Award, which is the third highest award in Girl Scouts of the USA. They were researching projects for the award and discovered the micro pantry.
“As a village, we are so proud of these girls for taking the initiative to help their neighbors in need,” said Mayor John Noak. “We thank them for their commitment to their community.”
The troop, which consists of eight 6th graders who attend A. Vito Martinez and John J. Lukancic middle schools, had been working on this project since February. They used fundraising to help cover costs for construction supplies, including a bake sale and securing sponsorships from American Legion Post #52, The Hampton Park Social Athletic Club, The Hampton Park Ladies Auxiliary, and Home Depot. All told, they were able to raise $1,000 for the project.
“The girls have worked extremely hard on planning and building their micro pantry,“ explained Troop Leader Stephanie Koperski. “They learned how to budget, use a table saw, measure, cut, paint and so much more during this process.” “This project has shown the girls just how important it is to come together as a community during uncertain times,” continued Troop Co-Leader Jennifer Drdak. “Our hope is that the micro pantry will help start the healing process this pandemic has imposed on our community.”
If you would like to donate non-perishable items to the pantry, the troop invites you to place them directly into the pantry itself. To find operating hours for White Oak Library’s Romeoville branch, visit whiteoaklibrary.org/Romeoville-Branch.