Bozeman Public Library launches mobile pantry

BOZEMAN – It started as a simple question that got the staff at Bozeman Public Library getting started.

“Two little kids came to the desk and they just looked at me with those big eyes and said ” Do you have food? We’re hungry and I’ve never experienced that before,” said Katheleen McPhereson-Glynn, children’s librarian at Bozeman Public Library.

Library staff say in recent weeks that they have seen an increase in the number of patrons asking them for more than just books, but rather food, many of them facing food insecurity.

“Sometimes it’s someone who’s diabetic and has forgotten a snack, but often it’s other people who really experience hunger for food insecurity,” says Megan Bruggeman, librarian at Bozeman Public Library.

Which prompted Kathleen and Megan to call the Gallatin Valley Food Bank to get some food left out for patrons.

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Edgar Cedillo – MTN NEWS

A simple question prompted Kathleen and Megan to call the Gallatin Valley Food Bank to get some food to leave out to patrons.

“You know that patrons cannot take full advantage of all the resources the library has to offer if they are consistently hungry or deal with the stress of food insecurity,” Bruggeman says.

They say that being a community meeting place means they want to provide more services than checking books.

“It was nice to be able to give it and be a place to give it to people. I was glad the kids were comfortable enough to ask us, ”says McPhereson-Glynn.

Their program has only been in place for a few weeks. It started with a box of food a week.

“So far, it has been a really good start,” Bruggman says.

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Edgar Cedillo – MTN NEWS

Library staff say one way to help with this new program is by donating to the Gallatin Valley Food Bank or the Bozeman Public Library Foundation.

In the weeks since, they receive 5 boxes a week. When they go into the summer, they expect more demand.

“Families come here to have their summer reading, to have their summer reading or just to entertain their children. I think it’s going to go even faster, so I predict it will grow, ”says McPhereson-Gylnn.

The staff at the library want the community to know that they are there for them.

“Everyone is welcome, you know there is no need to prove what you need, you just take what you need,” McPherson-Glynn says.

Library staff say one way to help with this new program is by donating to the Gallatin Valley Food Bank or the Bozeman Public Library Foundation.

DIGITAL EXTRA:

The staff at Bozeman Public Library started a mobile pantry, and listen to the story that got them started the program.

DIGITAL EXTRA: Nourishes more than mind at Bozeman Public Library

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