DENTON, Texas - Folks living in Denton have found a small way to make a big impact on their community.
‘Little Free Pantries’ are sprouting up in neighborhoods all around the area. It’s a way for residents who may be struggling to take what they need — anonymously.
Sarah Roland earns a living as a criminal defense attorney. She loves her job. But it's the work she's doing right outside her Denton office that fills her most with joy.
“I think it's important for all of us in whatever capacity we're able to help people,” the attorney said.
For Roland, it means keeping a 15-inch cedar box in front of her law practice filled with food and supplies. She is one of several Denton residents and business owners who have sponsored a ‘Little Free Pantry,’ the first of which were installed over the weekend with help from the non-profit Serve Denton.
“I know what's been taken has been cereal, macaroni, things like that,” Roland said.
And the idea seems to be taking off. In addition to the seven free pantries set up around town, there are always orders for several more."
“This is just another example of how Denton comes together to serve people,” said Carlie Kuban with Serve Denton. “They love to, and that's just exciting to see.”
Kuban says the idea started in Arkansas. Then, the Young Men's Service League in Denton pitched the idea to Serve Denton, who quickly said yes.
“There's a lot of agencies in the community providing food for people in need. But it's just to meet that in between time,” Kuban explained. “If someone can't make it to an agency or need something on the way home and they're hungry.”
People looking to sponsor a Little Free Pantry can apply on Serve Denton's website. The organization will install it for free. It’s then up to people, like Roland, to keep it stocked.
“We lost my younger brother, Randy, in April of this year,” Roland said. “So we're trying to do all the good we can.”