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Weston Food Pantry Is Desperate for Donations

WESTON, Conn. – Thanksgiving may be over, but the Weston Community Food Pantry still needs your donations. "People need help with their groceries all the time. The need doesn't go away just because the holidays came," said Betsy Peyreigne, co-director of the pantry.

"I tell people all the time, don't forget about us just because Thanksgiving came," she said.

In late October and throughout November, Peyreigne said the food pantry is inundated with donations from residents all over town. But once the holidays pass, donations become scarce. "I am already anticipating my January panic attack, that is my nightmare," she said.

Lately, food has been flying off the pantry shelves. It could be the high unemployment rate, the dipping stock market or the unsteady economy, Peyreigne said, but whatever the reason, the number of households who use the pantry has increased significantly in recent years. "A few years ago we helped 20 households any given year. This year we are helping 125 households. Many of those are with more than one kid as well, so in reality, there are over 300 people in our town who need our help," she said.

Many of the Weston residents in need are families with young children, Peyreigne said. "We need a lot of things that can help us make sure these kids are eating breakfast, having a good lunch and they get a warm dinner, especially when winter hits," she said.

Some of the items that the food pantry desperately needs are:

• Pancake mix

• Pancake syrup

• Oatmeal

• Dry cereal

• Powdered milk

• Granola bars

• Boxes of juice

• Bottled juice

• Canned tuna or chicken

• Mayonnaise

• Ketchup

• Tuna and Hamburger Helper

• Peanut butter

• Jelly

• Canned fruit

• Coffee

• Bread

• Canned stews

• Soups

The food pantry is also desperately in need of dog and cat food. "The pets are the ones that a lot of people forget about. I never want to see a family have to give away a dog or cat just because money is tight," she said.

Donations can be dropped off at the food pantry on Norfield Road, in the same parking lot as EMS and the fire station.

Residents can make money donations as well. Checks can be made out to the Community Food Pantry Inc. or gift cards can be purchased at the following stores: Stop & Shop, Caraluzzi's and Ancona's Market.

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