Ruby’s Pantry Hosts Monthly Pop-Up Event In Brainerd
Ruby’s Pantry hosted their monthly Pop-Up Pantry Tuesday at the Brainerd National Guard Armory. With $20 donation, anyone can come and receive around $120 worth of groceries.
“Ruby’s Pantry is designed to really serve anybody who has a little desire to extend their grocery budget beyond the end of the month, and who doesn’t need that?” said Mark Bjorlo, Lead Pastor at Journey North Church, which hosts the event.
With a $20 donation, people can come through and receive around $120 worth of groceries ranging from frozen meats, to dry goods, dairy, vegetables, and more.
“What we do is we allow people to come in, purchase their share, and then we ask them to have a seat,” explained Ruby’s Pantry Marketing and MC Coordinator Shanna Davis. “We let out about twenty out at a time so they can get in line with their vehicles where volunteers will load them up with their shares, and then we just ask that they don’t block any exits or entrance so we just keep the traffic flowing really nicely.”
Seventy-nine volunteers handed out over 22,000 pounds of food all within an hour and a half.
“We work fast. We start distribution at 11:00 a.m. and end at 12:30 p.m. and we average about 354 shares a month right now,” Davis added. “Our goal is to stay consistent at 400. Like I said, the more people that participate, the more food that will be sent and more money goes back into our community.”
By attending Ruby’s Pantry, not only are you able to save on groceries, but the money that is donated to buy a share of food is used towards a worthy cause in the Brainerd community.
“A lot of the money goes to help other organizations. This month, we distributed about $1,900 to a variety of places – Bridges of Hope, Minnesota Adult Teen Challenge, and a number of other organizations, as well as some specific needs got met for medical assistance for people and other things like that,” Bjorlo explained.
The organization has been distributing food to the Brainerd Community for ten years and hopes to continue the tradition well into the future.
“There’s a lot of people that are struggling and I think it’s huge for food. It’s huge to put a smile on somebody’s face. One of the things we talk about is that we need to talk to people when they come and make them feel important,” said Bill Dian, Head of Ruby’s Pantry for Journey North Church. “That’s what we try to do.”
Ruby’s Pantry in Brainerd is hosted by the Journey North Church every second Tuesday of the month. Anyone is welcome to attend.