BINGHAM — The St. Peter’s Catholic Church thrift store and food cupboard in Bingham, 23 miles north of Skowhegan, opens its doors Thursday in a former grocery store to residents of Bingham, Moscow, Caratunk, Pleasant Ridge and Concord Township.

The thrift store will open first, followed by the food cupboard in a couple of weeks, said volunteer Violet Tibbetts.

It’s part of an effort to address hunger in a state that ranks ninth in the nation and first in New England for food insecurity, according to data published by the Good Shepherd Food Bank in Auburn.

“We really need a food pantry,” said Tibbetts, Bingham’s town tax collector for 40 years.

Tibbetts said this past summer the Bingham Area Health Center hosted visits from Good Shepherd for outdoor food giveaways. On each of the visits, more than 100 people showed up for food.

A person is food insecure if they lack access to enough food to ensure adequate nutrition, according to data published by Good Shepherd.

To qualify for the food, people must be residents of the area towns and may have to meet income guidelines.

The thrift store will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.on Thursdays and Saturdays.

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