Local woman makes community pantry: ‘I’ve got your back, eat.’

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Across from the planned Save-A-Lot, you can find a wooden cabinet planted at Glass Street and Crutchfield Street.

If you open it up, you’ll find food and water.

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“Your human purpose is to help each other,” Netasha McClure said.

McClure saw similar food pantries being put up other places, but not in East Chattanooga, her neighborhood.

So she took things into her own hands.

A local art studio gave her the wood and helped her make a cabinet for the community.

“I was so excited, because I feel like, I asked for help and people donate and if we could do small things like that, look how, we could go anywhere,” McClure said.

If you need food all you have to do is walk up to the pantry, open it up and take whatever you need.

If you want to donate, open up the cabinet and put stuff in.

You can even write a message on the cabinet.

There is a chalkboard on the back of it.

“I’ve got your back, eat. Eat when you hungry. Give when you can. If you can’t never give don’t worry about it, because our neighbors are going to make sure that box is full all the time. That’s all I want,” McClure said.

Not far away is a free little library.

It’s like the pantry, but with books.

Gail McKeel was part of the community group that put it together several years ago.

She said books still rotate out well.

But to have a food cabinet now in the area, she says it shows the community has heart.

“And there is a need for food items for a lot of our neighbors,” McKeel said.

Johnny Patmon who lives in the neighborhood calls the food cabinet “Godsent.”

“For a low income community like this, a lot of people need that, and it’s much needed for this area. I hope, pray we can get some more around here in the vicinity,” Patmon said.

As for McClure, She’s hopeful people will swing by and grab stuff.

She said she’s already getting positive feedback from people who want to refill it.