The Journey of the Little Red Box is located at the Corner of North 18th & North J St. In Fort Smith, AR.
Excerpts modified from news stories:
“There’s a small-scale charity movement starting to take hold in neighborhoods across the country. Think of those “little free library” boxes, but with a twist: These are small pantries stocked with free food and personal care items like toothbrushes and diapers for people in need.
They’re found near churches, outside businesses and in front of homes. They come in many sizes, shapes and colors with names like, “The Little Red Pantry” or “The Blessing Box,” but all carry a common goal, to help those in need.
Most are a bright red box, about 2 feet wide and are mounted on a post near the street. There’s a door on the front of the box but no lock, so anyone can take what they need 24-7.
The food pantry idea has been spreading through social media and they have gone up across the country. Much of it seems to trace back to Jessica McClard, who created what she calls the “The Little Free Pantry” in Northwest Arkansas.
The products are put directly inside the pantry by those in the community who are feeling charitable and many report the turnover is as fast as 30 to 45 minutes.
Many believe these community-supported pantries are multiplying because of their simple concept. All of the items inside the boxes are free and there are no forms to fill out. Those using the boxes come and go as they wish, and that sense of anonymity is something you won’t find at traditional community food pantries.
Some have religious connections and are located near churches. Others are adopted by businesses whose employees want to pay it forward. All are serving up food and supplies to anyone in need.”