EDITORIAL: Donations help local food pantries

There were so many aspects of living that changed during the first two years of the coronavirus pandemic it can be hard to keep track of them. There are the high-profile changes, that include school closings and remote learning and the cancellations of major events, like the Daffodil Festival and Celebrate Wallingford. And it took Wallingtord two extra years to celebrate its 350th Jubilee.

All aspects of life were influenced, and we are still catching up to their return.

One example is the Week of Action, which took place last week. As the Record-Journal’s Karla Santos reported, the United Way of Meriden and Wallingford collected personal care items on behalf of local food pantries. Recipients included Master’s Manna and Church of the Nazarine GLOW Food Pantry, of Wallingford, and New Opportunities and the Salvation Army in Meriden.

Donated items included those that might not typically come to mind when it comes to pandemic rebound: toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, sunscreen. Yet for the past two years they have been the type of donations sought by the local United Way. “We’ve noticed that it’s harder for our pantries to get these kinds of items,” said Julia Pelletier, United Way marketing and community outreach director.

As Santos reported, last week was the first time since the onset of the pandemic that the United Way of Meriden and Wallingford was accepting donations in person. As Pelletier noted, donations are welcome by mail or at drop-off locations any time.

There’s continued hope that the worst of the pandemic is behind us, but times remain tough. Personal care items might seem like details, but they can add up to a lot more than that during a time of rising inflation. Meriden resident Judith Kupstis told the R-J the world would be a better place if everyone contributed “a little bit.” That’s an admirable perspective worth supporting.



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