BSH Blog

Welcoming In-Market Shoppers Once Again

Tuesday, May 18, 2021


BLUFFTON, SC - Bluffton Self Help will once again welcome in-market shoppers later this month in the Wellness Food Pantry. After a year of serving neighbors in a Drive-thru Pantry, Bluffton Self Help is thrilled to welcome neighbors back into a safe, friendly atmosphere where they can shop for their own groceries. Bluffton Self Help will continue to provide weekly grocery deliveries to homebound neighbors and the Drive-thru Pantry we will continue on Mondays from 4pm-6pm. Bluffton Self Help strives to meet neighbors where they are and has always provided a dignified shopping experience for all neighbors. “We know it is hard to ask for help, we are here to make it as easy as possible with dignity and respect in a client-centered environment.” – says Bluffton Self Help’s Executive Director, Kim Hall

Last March, Bluffton Self Help pivoted operations overnight in order to keep our neighbors, staff, volunteers and community safe. It was important that Bluffton Self Help remained open to help neighbors when they needed it most. The Drive-thru Pantry became a lifeline for hundreds of households each week – 40% of the vehicles that lined up around the building had never asked for help before. These neighbors continue to be faced with impossible choices of how to spend their scarce dollars. The Wellness Food Pantry assisted more than 50% of our community living paycheck to paycheck to stretch their budgets. “Neighbors who utilize the pantry can save around $75 a week on their grocery bill. Those funds can then be used elsewhere in their household budget. With the new market layout, we want neighbors to feel comfortable coming into our pantry. The goal is to make the shopping experience similar to how it feels when shopping at the grocery store.” –says Program Manager, Julia Violi.

The Wellness Food Pantry provides more than 500,000 pounds of healthy groceries, hygiene products, diapers, cleaning products and special holiday meals each year to more than 1,100 households who work or live in Bluffton. There are no income requirements, it truly is a market for all. Neighbors can walk the aisles to shop for fresh produce, milk, dairy, eggs, meat, bread and canned goods. The only difference between the Wellness Food Pantry and a grocery store is neighbors do not need their wallet to check-out. All opportunities at Bluffton Self Help are free of charge. “When I get home, I put my groceries away and feel good that I am able to provide a healthy meal to my kids. I never have to buy cereal and it is my kids favorite breakfast.” says one Bluffton Self Help neighbor.

The following hours will be available:
Drive-thru Pantry Hours: Monday 4pm-6pm
In-Pantry Shopping Hours: Wednesday 10am-12pm, Wednesday 4pm-6pm & Friday 10am-12pm

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