The Shelter Island Community Food Pantry is $1,000 richer thanks to a contribution from Bridgehampton National Bank.
Accepting the money on behalf on the Community Food Pantry were Al and Tippi Bevan, the husband and wife team who have been spearheading the effort to keep the pantry at Shelter Island Presbyterian Church stocked since 2007. They took the program over from Dana Hallman.
The Bevins noted that since the stock market crash in 2008, the demand for food supplies increased, with food disappearing from its shelves much faster than it had. They make no effort to track who is taking food from the pantry, simply putting it there for anyone who wants it.
No one asks for identification. A sign in the pantry simply advises those who are hungry to “take what you need, but remember there are others who have needs.”
Although the Food Pantry is housed at Shelter Island Presbyterian Church, it’s not a church function. The church doesn’t charge rent for use of its space, but it’s one of only a few places on the Island large enough to provide space to store items and make them available to those in need, Ms. Bevan said. She noted that many other Island church congregations contribute food and money to support the food pantry.
The Bevans are always looking for volunteers to help with the physical job of stocking the kitchen. They can be reached at 749-0705. And if anyone is hungry, the pantry is open between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. weekdays and can be accessed from the back of the building.
Over the next few weeks, Bridgehampton National Bank will be distributing an estimated $25,000 in checks to various food pantries in its 26 market areas as well as providing funds for Maureen’s Haven, the program that provides overnight accommodations in winter months for the area’s homeless.