In 1989 a group of 10 people from the St. Vincent De Paul Society of Holy Trinity Church realized that they could not keep up with financial aid to people who needed food so they decided to start a pantry. They ran a food drive over the 4th of July weekend, rented a small store front and opened for business on August 8, 1989. They paid the rent on the storefront by collecting bottles and cans which could be redeemed for a nickel!
Fast forward, and the pantry is a non-profit, non-denominational organization, staffed by over 700 volunteers, a full time executive director, warehouse manager and thrift store manager along with a part time office manager and program manager. The main Pantry is housed in a large warehouse on Queen Anne Road in Harwich MA and in 2017 the Pantry expanded to include the Healthy Meals in Motion mobile pantry serving the lower Cape. The Family Pantry runs a satellite pantry on the Cape Cod Community College Campus where students, staff, faculty and day care parents are served and welcomed.
The Family Pantry partners with the Greater Boston Food Bank and acts as a cross dock facility for the 30 pantries/soup kitchens on the Cape and Islands. Each month an additional 4 tractor trailer loads of food are brought to the Pantry and distributed to the various pantries across the Cape.
The Pantry is pleased to serve over 9,500 clients and in 2018 distributed over 91,000 bags of groceries which equals over 1.9 million meals and over 33 tons of gently used clothing.