Sue Salisbury of Westbrook Families Feeding Families discusses the food pantry’s operations with donors Tom Talbott, left, and Imahdi Zagon of Patriot Subaru in Saco. Robert Lowell / American Journal

With quite a few empty spaces on its shelves, Westbrook Families Feeding Families has received a much-needed boost with a $1,550 donation from a Saco car dealership.

Imahdi Zagon and Tom Talbott of Patriot Subaru visited the food pantry last week to present the donation to Salisbury, who pointed out to them the low inventory.

“Currently, we are low on peanut butter, canned beans, bags or boxes of rice, canned chicken and tuna,” she said.

The pantry has been operating out of donated space at the Westbrook Market on Stroudwater Street for nearly three years.

What started in 2007 as an operation based in Salisbury’s garage that delivered bagged lunches to children’s programs around Westbrook grew into delivering bags of peanut butter, jelly and bread to elementary schools before school vacations.

Imahdi Zagon presents the donation for Westbrook Families Feeding Families to Sue Salisbury. Contributed / Patriot Subaru

“When COVID came, we started bringing bags of groceries to the school meal sites and delivering food to families who could not get to those sites,” said Salisbury, who is chairperson of the Westbrook School Committee and a Westbrook representative in the state Legislature. About 30 families received the deliveries.


The deliveries continued until June of last year.

“When we stopped doing the grocery deliveries we opened up the pantry so people could come to choose what food they wanted,” she said.

Between 10 and 15 families are regular patrons of the pantry, she said.

Westbrook Families Helping Families also has been bringing bags of groceries to asylum seekers living in area hotels.

“It started with my mom, myself and friends from church. Now I have a board of directors that all lend a hand,” Salisbury said.

Talbott said Salisbury’s “neighbor to neighbor” operation is the kind of organization Patriot Subaru likes to support. Each month, the dealership selects a “different grassroots local organization that works to build a better community,” he said, and the dealership makes a donation based on sales during the first full week of that month. They also highlight the recipient on their website and social media accounts.

The pantry is open to the public from 4 to 5 p.m. on Thursdays.

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