By Michael Benavides
PLUMSTED – A pair of local food pantries will benefit from the efforts of Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts in New Egypt.
The Helping Hands Pantry, sponsored by the Christian Fellowship Church of New Egypt, Evergreen Road, and the Community Food Pantry at the Plumsted Presbyterian Church, Front Street, each received hundreds of items that will help to feed people during the holiday season.
Scoutmaster Dave Menaker said the food drive, known as Scouting for Food, “was a great success. The scouts did a great job and the community gave generously.”
During the weekend of Nov. 5-6, the scouts distributed plastic bags to members of the community and asked their friends and neighbors to support them in their attempt to help individuals and families who are struggling to put food on their table.
The following weekend, Nov. 12-13, the scouts went back out into the community and collected hundreds of bags that residents had filled with food.
“The scouts are proud to be able to help those people in our community who are less fortunate or facing economic hardship,” Menaker said.
“The purpose of Scouting For Food is twofold. First, it is to help collect items to stock the food pantries. Second, it is to teach the scouts not only how important, but also how simple it is to help others,” he said.
Donna Charles, chairwoman of the Community Food Pantry at the Plumsted Presbyterian Church, called the scouts’ recent food drive a success. She said more food was collected this year than in any year in the past.
“We plan on working with the Boy Scouts again as we have for many years,” she said. “This food drive is the foundation for our pantry for a good part of the year. We have other donations that are given throughout the year, but this is the most important one for us.”
Menaker said about 100 Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts from New Egypt participated in the Scouting for Food project. He said conducting a food drive is a great way for scouts to get involved with their community.
“Community service is a founding principal of scouting,” he said. “All scouts, at all age levels, are eager to participate and help with service projects. It reinforces that scouts ‘help other people at all times’ and should ‘do a good turn daily.’ ”