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All over the country



Photograph courtesy of PAWS Philippine Animal Welfare Society's ‘community paw-ntry’ in Loyola Heights, QC.

In a matter of days, the effort had been replicated in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces followed by other parts of Luzon.

Soon, community pantries began popping up in different parts of the country spearheaded by individuals, communities, neighborhoods, groupd of friends, small businesses, cooperatives and organizations.

Almost 300 community pantries have been set up thus far, most of which acknowledge the Maginhawa pantry as inspiration and quote their slogan in their local languages.

According to Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte, more than 70 community pantries had been established in the city alone by 21 April.

On Narra Street in Claro, Quezon City, 72-year-old Elmer Cordero helps out at the Tulong Obrero Community Pantry, which aims to help drivers and the unemployed. He is part of the Piston 6, jeepney drivers who were arrested and detained last year for protesting the government’s ban on passenger jeepneys. Many helped in freeing him, and now he says he is repaying for the help he got.

Other pantries in Quezon City include ones along Matyaga Street in Pinyahan; Matatag Street; Kalayaan Avenue; Loyola Heights; CP Garcia Avenue; Holy Spirit; Napocor Village; Cubao; Barangay UP Campus; Mother Ignacia Street; Visayas Avenue; Commonwealth Extension; Santa Monica and Kaligayahan; 23 Kamias Road; East Riverside in San Francisco del Monte; and Sangandaan, Project 8. The Matatag Community Pantry also offers free condom and sanitary pads and put up a sign with contact numbers of organizations offering free HIV testing and help in domestic abuse, while Sangandaan also offers books. The Philippine Animal Welfare Society offers pet food and care products for pet owners in their “Community Paw-ntry” in Loyola Heights.

In Manila, there are pantries on P. Noval Street and Matimyas Street in Sampaloc; Intramuros; Saint Scholastica’s College, run by the Benedictine Sisters; and in San Andres, Malate, while Taguig City has pantries in Hagonoy and North Signal Village; and Marikina City in Parang, Tumana and Marikina Heights. Caloocan City pantries are in Morning Breeze Subdivision, Bagumbong, A. Mabini Street and San Roque Cathedral. People set up pantries in West Crame, San Juan City; Poblacion, Pateros; Malanday, Valenzuela; Maysilo and Gov. Pascual Street in Baritan, Malabon; Saint Peregrine Laziosi Church in Tunasan, Muntinlupa City; Addition Hills, Mandaluyong; Barangay 136, Pasay City; and Kapitolyo and Pasig Greenpark Village in Manggahan, Pasig City. Screenwriter Jerry Gracio set up his own in Rincon, Valenzuela City. A community pantry in Better Living Subdivision, Parañaque, provides sustenance to delivery drivers.

In northern Luzon, people created pantries in Annafunan West, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan; Bugallon, Alaminos City and Tapuac in Dagupan City, Pangasinan; La Trinidad, Benguet; and San Fernando, La Union. Baguio City has pantries on Evangelista Street, Leonila Hill; at the Igorot Park; at the University of the Philippines; and Magsaysay.

In central Luzon, Bulacan communities set up pantries on MacArthur Highway, Malolos; Bantog, San Miguel; Riverside-Poblacion and Paltao in Pulilian; and Pantoc, Meycauayan, while Pampanga has in Balibago, Angeles City; on Consunji Street in San Fernando City; Magalang; Apalit; and San Agustin in Santa Ana. There are also pantries in Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya; Libertad, San Narciso, Zambales; Mariveles, Bataan; and Tinio in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija.

In the Calabarzon Region, Ampid 1, San Mateo in Rizal and General Emilio Aguinaldo, Dasmariñas and Panungyanan in General Trias City in Cavite have pantries, while Laguna has several in Batong Malake, Los Baños; Santa Cruz; Labas in Sta. Rosa; Lumban; Pacita 1 in San Pedro; and Palingon in Calamba City. Quezon locals also set up theirs in Lumingon in Tiaong, Dolores, and Ilayang-Dupay in Lucena City, while Batangas residents have theirs on P. Laygo Street in Lipa City, at Flatwhite Cafe in Batangas City, and at Balite’s Eatery, Poblacion, San Luis.

In the Bicol Region, there are community pantries Grandvale II (Deca 2), San Felipe, Naga City; Bogñabong, Tabaco City, Albay; Legazpi City, Albay; and San Roque, Iriga City, Camarines Sur. In the Mimaropa Region, there are ones in Batiano, Odiongan, Romblon; Poblacion II, Santa Cruz, Occidental Mindoro; at the NADECO Store, Santiago, Naujan Oriental Mindoro; San Miguel, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan; and Masagana, El Nido, Palawan.

Aside from Iloilo in the Visayas, there are pantries in Gun-ob, Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu; Panglao, Bohol; Bantayan, Dumaguete City in Negros Orientaland Catarman and Mondragon in Northern Samar.

In Mindanao, sisters Lucia and Luzianie Silva, both from the UP Diliman, set up a pantry in Iligan City, Lanao del Norte, while others popped up in Agdao and Mintal in Davao City, Pasil in Kauswagan, Cagayan de Oro City; Zamboanga City; and Upper Comcent of Mindanao State University campus in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur.

The community pantry concept has reached other countries as well, when one opened on 21 April in Farol, Dili, Timor-Leste.