Digital Original: LR man builds free outdoor pantries to help feed those in need

Digital Originals

LITTLE ROCK, Ark – Thinking outside the box is how one local man is helping to feed his community.

Basil McGuire and his mother, Elaine are from Sherwood and are just a few people behind the idea of the outdoor food pantries, they call “Blessing Boxes.

McGuire says he had this idea of helping his community because he’s seen more people struggling and felt he needed to do something.

“I believe God has called me to do this,” says McGuire. “I started talking about the idea with my mom and next thing – I got to building the boxes.”

McGuire received help from his friend Randy Wiggins, a homebuilder, and the two men helped start what is now being called, Blessing Boxes Ministries.

“We are a newly created nonprofit and this so we can register with other local organizations to help get more food,” he says.

The large outdoor boxes take time to build explains McGuire. He says each  box is 4ft tall and 4ft wide and have several coats of paint to be able to withstand hard weather conditions.

Overall, the boxes serve as outdoor food pantries that are mainly supported by local anonymous donations.

“They see with this if you can stop by and pick up a can of food and drop it off… you’re partner with us to make sure that we’re feeding our community,” he explains.

So far two boxes have been created and set up  throughout the community.

One box is dedicated to a family friend, Ferrell Grigsby, that died unexpectedly.

The most recent box was dedicated to Devin Reynolds, who died at 23-years-old in 2012. He father, Steve Reynolds, is always looking for ways to help honor his son’s life and mission for doing good and is now using the Blessing Boxes as a way to keep his memory alive.

“This box is dedicated to Steve’s son and we have another one going up soon for him in September,” McGuire explains.

McGuire asks that those wanting to donate simply post to Facebook and share or tag their social media page, Our Blessing Boxes, so he can help share the word. 

 “People have sent messages that they have dropped off food and other items and I help spread the word,” he says. “We want people that need something to feel comfortable coming and grabbing it and knowing that your community is here to help.”

McGuire says there is still lots more to be done to help with local hunger but believes that together these boxes and help make a difference in peoples lives.

For more information on how you can get a box in your community, click here.

You can contact the Blessing boxes builder directly by emailing him here, mcguireelaine@aol.com.

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