KINGWOOD — Melanie Bentz needed an AmeriCorps project.
She decided to make it a blessing.
Repurposing an old metal newspaper machine, she started a Blessing Box.
A Blessing Box is similar to the free library boxes located around the county. Instead of books, it is stocked with donated, nonperishable food, personal hygiene products, baby food and formula.
And it’s all there for the taking.
Starting Points purchased the newspaper box for her from Etsy, an online shopping site. The box is in front of the Preston County Caring Council, 105 West High St.
Bentz said the idea behind the box is “take what you need and leave what you can.”
“The Corner Stone Community Church has one outside the church,” Bentz said. “It gets a lot of use, but you have to drive to get to it. I thought one here in town could reach more people.”
The box allows people to pick up what they need anonymously.
“Melanie asked if she could do the Blessing Box,” Starting Points Director Kay DeWitt said. She said the Blessing Box will help provide food for people when the food pantries are closed.
DeWitt said along with the donated food, individual boxes containing items for breakfast, lunch and dinner are also in the box.
Bentz said the box is already receiving donations.
“We just put it out Monday and a lady came by and filled it up this morning,” she said.