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Fundraiser for Gorham Food Pantry

Squares for an afghan blanket are laid out and ready to be sewn together as part of a fundraiser for the Gorham Food Pantry this spring. Tara Higgins Benson of Gorham coordinated the fundraiser. (Photo courtesy of Gorham Food Pantry)

Neighbors Helping Neighbors

From Gorham Food Pantry

GORHAM – Early this Spring, as the pandemic was in full swing, Tara Higgins Benson of Gorham had an idea to help support the Gorham Food Pantry.

She posted a request on Facebook to all of her crocheting friends to create and donate four-inch granny squares in any color to be delivered to her house via mail by May; she would assemble all of those donated squares into an afghan and raffle it off, with all proceeds benefitting the Pantry and the afghan going to the highest bidder.

Tara posted a quick tutorial on how to crochet a granny square, and volunteers got to work!  Squares came in from Gorham and around the US over the course of the spring, and by June, Tara had enough to lay out a pattern and assemble the individual squares into a blanket.

Tara estimates that the creation of the 196 individual squares took a little over 65 hours to complete; the assembly of each square into the final product plus the border took another 25 hours total.  Overall, the completed afghan took Tara and six other volunteers approximately 90 hours to complete. 

During the week of the online raffle, Upcycle Maine displayed the completed afghan in their window to help publicize the event; the afghan was raffled off to the highest bidder, and over $700 was raised for the Pantry to help care for our neighbors in Gorham.

The Pantry board and volunteers have continued to be humbled and appreciative of the deep support shown by the Gorham community during the pandemic; so many individuals and businesses have made generous food, personal care and monetary donations to help support their neighbors.  There are too many names to mention here, but the Pantry has appreciated each and every donation.

As a reminder, in addition to our regular Thursday hours (10A-12P), the Pantry will also be open for clients on the 2nd and 4th Monday evenings of each month from 6P-7P, beginning in September.  The Pantry is grateful to our partners at Gorham Rec who have been partnering to deliver food to clients who are unable to travel.  Any Gorham resident can take advantage of the Gorham Food Pantry; you need only visit during pantry hours with proof of residency (a utility bill with your name and your Gorham address on it – not a drivers’ license).  The best way to keep up-to-date on Pantry happenings and current needs is to follow them on Facebook (Gorham Food Pantry Friends), and messages via Facebook are responded to quickly. 

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