Kiwanis fundraising effort stocks Hanson pantry’s coffers
By Stephanie Spyropoulos
HANSON — The recent culmination of fund raising efforts between two groups working to make Hanson a better place has been successful following the announcement of a $13,548 donation to the Hanson Food Pantry.
Hanson Kiwanis International South Shore Chapter President Gerry Lozeau and Kiwanis member Laura FitzGerald-Kemmett presented Hanson Food Pantry Director Sharon Kennedy and Paul Nicol, a Rotarian and pantry volunteer, the donation check as well as gift cards and a deposited cash statement at the annual Steak Fry dinner on Monday held at the Hanson AA on Reed Street.
FitzGerald-Kemmet also chairs Hanson’s Community Preservation Commission.
Sharon Kennedy who has been with the pantry for 20 years, her husband Bill Kennedy and son Jason Kennedy — both Masons — have been working with other volunteers on the new expansion project of the food pantry at the High Street location. Work is steadily nearing completion, according to Nicol who said the effort is progressing.
Kennedy calls her service of two decades at the food pantry a vocation.
“It is part of my faith. God asks us to serve him by serving others,” she said.
She addressed members and guests at the Steak Fry thanking the efforts of everyone involved.
“We are grateful for all donations and the ability to witness what this great group of people has done. 3,000 people are serviced each year through the Hanson Food Pantry,” she said.
Nicol has been overseeing most of the renovations at the High Street building along with local plumber Mark Schneider, Liz and Bob Lundgren and numerous other volunteers. He said they have received $200,000 in in-kind donations and materials toward the renovation project.
The building has passed recent inspections and the group is moving toward the next phases of sheet rocking the bathrooms, said Nicol. They hope in the near future to get a temporary order to open on High Street.
In 2013, the Hanson Food Pantry 65,000 meals’ worth of food, said Nicol.
In the coming weekend of Aug. 22 and Aug. 23 St. Joseph’s the Worker Church of Hanson will take a second offering at their Masses, with funds going directly to the food pantry. Good Deeds thrift shop located at 209 Water St. in Pembroke will donate October proceeds to the pantry.