COLUMBUS, Ohio — Leave what you can and take what you need.

That is the goal of a local nonprofit organization in Columbus, Ohio that is doing what they can to put an end to food insecurity one day at a time.

What You Need To Know

  • The Columbus Blessing Box Project is a nonprofit organization that places cabinets of food donated from community members for community members to help with food insecurity in central Ohio

  • Food insecurity increases during the holiday season and so does the usage of the blessing boxes

  • There are over 100 blessing boxes across central Ohio

The Columbus Blessing Box Project is a nonprofit organization that provides food for the community from the community.

A blessing box is a cabinet that community members can fill with food for community members in need. The project was created in Jan. 2018 and has grown tremendously with over 100 locations across central Ohio.

Founder Gretchen Davis said she learned about this idea from her sister and thought it would be a perfect way for her children to learn how to give back.

“We couldn’t find a place for my young children to participate. My sister lives in Charleston, South Carolina. She started the Low Country Blessing Boxes project, and they have had great success down there. And I thought, well, if it works down there, maybe it’ll work here,” said the Columbus Blessing Box founder, Gretchen Davis.

During the holiday season, the need for food increases and so does the usage of the blessing boxes.

“Around this time every year, we see an increase in our usage. I’ve been hearing from our what we call our hosts, each host kind of keeps an eye on their local box and they are struggling to keep the boxes full,” said Davis.

If you can donate in person, the Blessing Box Project does request specific things.

“We ask for shelf stable items, some things that are easy to make. Some people have a kitchen and can make, you know, spaghetti and meatballs. Other people have only a microwave and need things that are microwavable and other people have nothing. So, ready to eat items also is very helpful,” said Davis.

And there are also options for online donations.

“If you can’t get out, but you can shop online, we have an Amazon wish list and everything goes directly to a blessing box,” said Davis.

The Blessing Box is an easy way for anyone who wants to give back whenever and however they can.

“It’s very kid friendly. It’s easy. You can just fill a box any time it works in your schedule. There’s no signing up or coming at a specific time. If you have a little more than you need, you put it in a box. If you have not enough, then you come and take whatever you need from a box,” said Davis.