The Daily Bread Community Food Pantry first opened its doors as Jerusalem Community Food Pantry in August 1997, occupying a small space in the social hall of the Jerusalem Lutheran Church in Schwenksville, Pennsylvania. It served approximately 20 families each month. Through the commitment of an all-volunteer workforce, the food pantry quickly grew as the need for services escalated.
Churches, local schools, and civic groups recognized the depth of service need in the area and eagerly partnered with the food pantry. What began as a handful of volunteers and retail contributions in a small space in a church social hall became in 2002, in response to a major economic recession, a volunteer base that tripled in size to run the pantry during every opening multiple times per month, an ongoing force of twelve retail contributors offering food each week, and an entire social hall that utilized every inch of available space to accommodate food and program participants.
The need for service did not decrease in 2002, however, and by 2013 the space needed to house the operation of the food pantry greatly exceeded the room available in the social hall.
The Daily Bread Community Food Pantry now celebrates a unique milestone in its history. In order to safely serve its increasing population and to house the food required to do so, it has left the umbrella of the Jerusalem Lutheran Church, which generously sheltered the pantry for 18 years. It now has a new home that can comfortably accommodate its sizable population and has begun to form its own unique identity through its development as a self-sustained 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
In the months ahead, the Daily Bread Community Food Pantry will continue to undergo change, but its dedication to its mission will remain the same. While its name has recently been altered and its location has been shifted, it will continue to stand ready to compassionately serve area residents in need of food, support, and other assistance.