Burlington Township, NJ (WTXF) - The Burlington Township Food Pantry is in search of a new home.
“Some people don't know where their next meal is coming from," said Pearline Campbell. She’s worried that families who rely on the Burlington Township Food Pantry could go hungry because it's being forced out of its current home.
"I've been coming here 4 years almost. It's very helpful and we got to get blessing for it," said Pearline who comes here to get food every Wednesday when the pantry is open for nearly three hours. She has six children. The youngest is Michelle. She’s 10 years old. This place has kept her family fed and less stressed after a shoulder injury that keeps her from working as much as she used to.
"Knowing that after tomorrow that it's not going to be there what do you tell the kids the next week?"
Domenic Zulla runs the pantry on the lower level of the Burlington Center Mall.
"When they leave here they actually thank us because it's like going to the supermarket," he said as he showed us all the food there. He says November 22nd he got a notice in the mail saying the pantry had 30 days to vacate the mall space.
"I have no place to go. We have a pantry with no home," he said. Moving day is now just a few days away.
"I'm trying to empty shelves to liquidate to have less things to move and store where ever we're going to go," said Domenic. He gets emotional thinking of the 100-plus families they won't be able to feed.
"There's a lot of families that depend on us and that bothers me. That's how I got into this when I saw the need and I thought I could fulfill it," he said. Domenic doesn’t know where he can store 24 refrigerators and freezers of meat and boxes and shelves of food.
"It's top shelf. We're not giving people things that you wouldn't eat yourself." He and a dozen volunteers do this from the heart.
"No pay. No pay. This is all about feeding the families," he says. He’s hoping someone will donate a temporary space or struggling families will suffer.
"I don't know what they're going to do," he said. The pantry is state and federally funded and it gets regular donations from restaurants and businesses. The mall where it operates has little to no stores remaining. We left a message for mall management. We’re waiting to hear back from them. Domenic says he wasn’t given a reason they have to leave. The space was donated but the pantry pays for the electric.
If you have a warehouse or 2 to 3,000 square feet of space in Burlington that they can use temporarily contact FOX 29.