Messalonskee High School students support other students through a school food pantry program started three years ago, and school officials say there’s still a great need as winter approaches.

The program was started by Principal Paula Callan, who said Thursday she got the idea from a Student Council-sponsored food drive for Thanksgiving and asked to keep some of the food at the school for needy students and their families. Little by little, the school started getting donations from organizations around the area, she said.

While school is a place for students to learn, the people who run it also have a responsibility of taking care of their well-being, Callan said.

The pantry has an open-door policy, so students can come in as they please and no one will ask any questions. It’s also open during the summer and vacation periods.

Fellow students, along with donations, help restock the shelves.

“I don’t think the kids really recognized that there was a need,” Callan said Thursday. “They’re less likely to take things for granted (now).”

Madeline St. Amour — 861-9239

[email protected]

Twitter: @madelinestamour

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