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The Forest Park Public Library is happy to announce our new project: a little free pantry. A Little Free Pantry is a grassroots, crowd sourced idea to help a community with food insecurity.

Little Free Pantries are based on the Little Free Library concept which provides the opportunity for neighbors to help neighbors.  According to the Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap Study, one in seven people in Cook County will experience food insecurity this year, which is the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of food. Food insecurity can affect anyone including children, older adults, people with disabilities, the working poor, and veterans.

Who is the Little Free Pantry for?
It’s for anyone who needs help with food. We will not be monitoring who takes from or who gives to the Food Pantry. If you have something to give, please do. If you need something, please take it.

What can go in the Little Free Pantry?
We hope it will be stocked with food and things people need like non-perishable food items and toiletry items, such as bars, canned goods (pop tops are best), proteins, personal care items, new socks, etc. We are not collecting razors, chemicals, clothing, homemade items, or unsealed or opened food. If you have a question, please ask in the library or email us at

How is the Little Free Pantry stocked?
The pantry will be stocked organically. To start it off, library staff members donated food and other things. We are hoping community members will continue to give and help us keep it full of useful items. Library funds are not being used to stock this pantry.

How does the Little Free Pantry differ from other food pantries?
The Little Free Pantry is small, so it cannot be relied on to help with pervasive need. The Little Free Food Pantry does not have hours, require applications, or need of financial proof of need, and is available to anyone at anytime.

Is this the only food pantry in the area?
We are fortunate to have several food pantries in the area including:

Who built the Little Free Pantry?
The Little Free Pantry was designed and built by Urban Pioneers Group, a local Forest Park business.

If you need more assistance with finding food or shelter, please go here and here.

Have questions or want more info? Email us at

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