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Volunteers Step Up After Webster-Dudley Food Pantry Picked Clean

By Jim Armstrong, WBZ-TV
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Update: Police now say the food pantry was not robbed.


WEBSTER (CBS) — Volunteers at the Webster/Dudley Foodshare program are scrambling to restock their shelves, after someone broke in and cleaned the place out.

“When we walked in this morning, the shelves were almost empty,” says Foodshare director Donna Farrow. “Everything was gone.”

Farrow has run the pantry for 28 years, and though she says it has been robbed twice in the past, this was the worst.

“I just wonder why anybody would want to do that,” she says. “Because all they have to do is ask and we give them food.”

The timing of the robbery couldn’t have been worse. Needy families come to the pantry in the basement of the United Church of Christ on Thursday mornings to get enough food to last the month.

Webster police say there are no signs of forced entry, and Farrow thinks someone might have accidentally left a door open upstairs.

“We’re going to let the police investigate the crime,” explains community organizer David O’Connor, “but in the meantime, the place is bare. We really need to do something to replenish the stock.”

O’Connor turned to his social media resources and posted news of the robbery online. People from the town started donating immediately and local businesses stepped up with food and cash donations.

“It’s just great to see people come together,” O’Connor says.

“Everybody wants to help and it’s just so heartwarming,” adds Farrow. “The good outweighs the bad.”

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