about US

History

The First Church Stoneham Pantry began as a few metal shelves on the church stage in 1999, providing a handful of essentials to a few residents. The next year the pantry was moved to a closet and after a few more years, an underutilized basement closet that once held choir robes was reconfigured to create a mini-grocery store. As demand within the community continued to grow, local Boy Scouts and church volunteers banded together to expand and create more efficient storage areas. The addition of commercial freezer and refrigerator units have allowed us to increase our offerings of fresh and frozen foods.

 

What We Do

Staffed entirely by a small but dedicated team of volunteers, the Pantry currently provides food assistance for the needs of almost 130 Stoneham families (about 300 people) each year by:

  • Transporting 800-1200 pounds of food from the Merrimack Valley Food Bank (MVFB) to the pantry each month

  • Packing and distributing an average of 450 grocery bags a month to fulfill clients’ orders

  • Sorting, boxing and shelving donated items

  • Shopping weekly to supplement donations and items received from MVFB

  • Delivering orders to homebound clients

 

Where We Get Our Food

We receive our food from multiple sources:

  • Food drives conducted by schools, community organizations, businesses, and the annual USPS letter carrier food drive

  • Donations from individuals, local businesses and organizations

  • Merrimack Valley Food Bank in Lowell

  • Shopping trips funded by monetary donations

  • Surplus foods shared with us by the Seventh Day Adventist Community Services Food Pantry

  • Our organic vegetable garden, created for us by the Girl Scouts in 2021

 

Winter Weather Policy

If the Stoneham Public Schools are CLOSED or the Town of Stoneham declares an emergency due to snow or other inclement weather, the Pantry will be closed for that day.  If the Stoneham Public School Schools have a DELAYED OPENING, the Pantry will take place as scheduled.  Closures will also be posted on our Facebook page.