WEST MILTON — A bus shelter which has served the community for two decades is now the home to a project which is filling another need.
Milton Rotary Club President Jeff Coup said approximately 20 years ago the club built a bus shelter — which is painted in blue and yellow Rotary colors — along Route 642 in West Milton.
The shelter was built, and placed on land owned by the convenience store in West Milton, after club members noticed children standing outside in the snow while waiting for the school bus.
While the shelter has been used lightly over the last several years, Tiffany and Tauz Bubb live nearby and realized it would be the perfect location for a community project they wished to launch.
The Bubbs were put in touch with the Milton Rotary Club through Tiffany’s cousin, Rose Williams.
The club gave the Bubbs its approval to open “Our Little Free Pantry” inside of the bus stop shelter.
The Bubbs have placed a small cabinet inside of the bus stop, and with donations are keeping it stocked with items such as non-perishable food items and bottled water.
“This was put here to serve the community,” Coup said, of the shelter. “This is a perfect opportunity to continue serving the community.”
Tiffany said the idea to start a free food pantry came to her one night as she awoke from sleeping.
“I thought it would be nice for the kids in the community to get involved in something,” she said.
The Bubb’s two sons, 10-year-old Tristyn and 6-year-old Teegan, are involved in helping with the pantry.
“They love it,” Tiffany said, adding that her sons help to sweep the floor in the bus stop while she’s stocking the cabinet.
She also noted that she wanted the pantry to be outside so individuals can access it at any time.
“The spot was perfect because we can walk to it, keep our eye on it,” Tiffany said.
Williams noted that many food pantries are only open during the daytime, when individuals who work but have a need are unable to access the pantries. She agreed with Tiffany that it’s important for the West Milton pantry to be available at all times.
In keeping an eye on the pantry, Tauz has noticed that individuals in need tend to stop by at night for food items.
He also noted that he’s seen children stop by for a bottle of water while riding bikes. The Bubbs are glad the pantry can serve that need as well.
Through the first week that the pantry was in place, Tiffany said all of the food items initially stocked were taken by those in need. The pantry was quickly restocked.
“During these times, a lot of people lost their jobs,” she said. “There is a need for food.”
Coup praised the Bubb family for starting the pantry.
“We’re happy the stepped forward to do this,” he said. “It’s lots of people doing lots of little acts of kindness that go around and add up.”
Donations of non-perishable food items or bottles of water for the pantry can be left at the bus shelter.
The Bubbs are also seeking donations of new or gently used coats, as well as new hats, gloves, mittens and boots to have available at the pantry during the winter months.
For more information on the pantry, visit the Our Little Free Pantry, West Milton PA Facebook page.