It is so exciting that Peoria Music Live gets to be part of this new project!
Helping area kids make sure their basic needs are met is a first step towards building relationships across the Peoria communities.
I remember when I was struggling to keep things together for my family. I often had to work long hours and leave my then-14 yr old in charge of her siblings (6, 8, & 10) all day at the campgrounds where we lived. While we visited a local food pantry weekly, a pantry like this would have been a huge blessing to her during those times.
When I found out that the school district was having a hard time keeping these pantries stocked at area schools, and looking for business and organization sponsorships to keep it stocked, I knew that between my family and my Peoria Music Scene community, this was a project we could all be a part of and make a difference with.
We want others to know that those of us involved in the music community of Peoria care about what is going on, and want to not only help individuals, but work together to make our city a better place.
If you haven’t yet seen the video explaining what a Little Free Pantry is, and how Peoria Music Live is getting involved with them, check it out here.
My daughters and I filled it and shot that video on Thursday, August 8th.
After surveying what we had stocked it with already, I decided a few things were missing and went back the next day.
Even though school is not yet in session, I did notice right away that someone had found at least one thing useful in the pantry already. When traffic picks up, I expect that it will empty out much more quickly.
After that visit it also contained a few small jars of peanut butter, some feminine products, a few more school supplies, and several more snack bars. I threw in a few stickers from Peoria Music Live, but one of the things that I look forward to is seeing community connections created through this pantry by bringing local music to those who use it.
By becoming a sponsor, Peoria Music Live has committed to stopping by and re-stocking the pantry at least once a week. However, with just a few of us on board, I know we can do better than that.
I will continue to visit every few days once school starts and let you know if there are things that seem to be out of stock faster than others.
Below you’ll find out where the pantry is and get some ideas for things that can be stocked in it, as well as information on ways to help this project.
District 150 opens its doors on Wednesday, August 14th. The Peoria Music Live Little Free Pantry will likely see heavier use starting as the traffic increases then.
Here is a graphic provided by the school district, outlining what types of items we might want to stock the pantry with:
Anybody is welcome to stop by the pantry and stock it at any time. If you can’t get there, you can also send money through PayPal (firstname.lastname@example.org) and specifically note that it is a pantry donation. I can’t make special trips to pick up donated items from you. But if you have items you’d like to give me to take on my next trip, I can send you my address to drop items off, or tell you where I’ll be for live music next and see you there.
I will remind everyone about the pantry from time to time. However, if you are interested in picking one day a month (or even one day a week) to be in charge of checking it and stocking it, let me know and we’ll make arrangements so we can make the most out of this project.
Don’t underestimate what kind of a difference you can help make here.
If you’ve ever been in a place in life where every day is a struggle, you know that the littlest things can give you hope, just when you need it. If you’ve never been in that kind of situation, I will tell you that it was that kind of hope that sparked the idea that took us from homelessness to where I am today… people, giving a little of themselves, to make my day better.
I am very excited about letting Peoria know that our music community cares and wants to be a part of making Peoria a better place. Most of all, I’m excited about making a difference in the lives of some students and their families, one donated bit of hope at a time.
You can count the number of seeds in an apple,
but nobody can count the number of apples in a seed.
Plant seeds wherever you go.
… seeds of kindness, joy, peace, grace, love, hope ...
and your impact on the world will be immeasurable.