MADRID – Johnny Appleseed will host the Take a Bite Out of Poverty kickoff as New Beginnings Food and Clothing Outreach, Inc. unveils a model of their new facility at 2 p.m., Sunday, March 11 at the Madrid Community Center.
New Beginnings is a non-profit organization whose mission is to ease the burden of poverty by providing gently used clothing, household items and food to those in need in the Madrid area.
The food pantry and thrift store are now housed in a very small run-down barn on Route 14 in Madrid Springs. There is insufficient space, little or no insulation, poor lighting and heating, and it is inaccessible to handicapped persons, according to the New Beginnings Board of Directors.
So they have decided to raise funds to build a new facility. Local contractor Roddy Burns will head the construction.
With the new facility, New Beginnings seeks to become “more than a thrift store.”
The new building will be handicapped accessible and will include a fitting room, a sorting room, a restroom, and an enlarged food pantry and clothing area.
There will also be an area to display information for assistance and educational pamphlets, a comfortable sitting area for those reading literature or waiting, and space to offer a listening ear or a prayer.
The board says the larger building will enable New Beginnings to host speakers, to have a ready supply of items for local residents who experience a disaster such as a house fire, and to offer a central place for the collection of clothing and household items for areas that have been struck by natural disaster. The vision even includes a community garden, making use of a spacious lawn.
The event on March 11 will include a presentation of the history and vision for the new New Beginnings facility. There will be a variety of apple treats, and Johnny Appleseed himself, in recognition of Johnny Appleseed Day on March 11.
For more information, contact Donna Moore 322-4126.
The store is open every Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. The food pantry is open seven days a week by appointment. Appointments for free food distribution can be made by calling Anita Davis at 322-4307 or Gloria M. Watson at 322-5631.
To contribute to the new building fund, checks made out to New Beginnings Building Fund can be mailed to New Beginnings Clothing and Food Outreach, P.O. Box 142, Madrid, N.Y., 13660. Donations to New Beginnings can also be made at any Community Bank branch.
New Beginnings began in 1989 when members of St. John’s Catholic Church, Scotch Presbyterian Church and the United Church of Madrid joined forces to bring relief to those in financial need.