2017-06-14 / Londonderry

Margaret Barton presented with award for community service

Londonderry Volunteer Rescue Squad members stand to applaud Margaret Barton as she accepts the Community Service Award.  — COURTESY PHOTOLondonderry Volunteer Rescue Squad members stand to applaud Margaret Barton as she accepts the Community Service Award. — COURTESY PHOTOLONDONDERRY ― The Londonderry Volunteer Rescue Squad recently presented its Community Service Award to recognize the volunteer work of Margaret Barton of Londonderry.

Many may recognize Barton as an employee of Clarks IGA or as the face of the Neighbor’s Food Pantry, but few may be aware of the full extent of her impact on the tri-mountain community, according to a press release from LVRS.

Barton is the volunteer executive director of The Neighbors Food Pantry, a nonprofit organization that supplies food to those in need. All monies received to support this entity are through donations. Currently, 60 families participate.

Barton’s responsibilities include ordering food from the Vermont Foodbank, ensuring that the shelves are stocked and that the bags are filled and distributed to Smith Haven; organizing volunteers to unload the food trucks, deliver grocery bags, assist with distribution and stock the shelves; coordinating the weekly Flood Brook “Backpack Program,” which provides food to 12-16 children and their families year-round; collecting food from the donation box at Clarks and bringing it to Neighbor’s Food Pantry; helping people with required paperwork and assisting them through the process at each distribution; and ensuring compliance with all federal and state regulations.

Barton also coordinates the Giving Tree program, which ensures that children of families in need received Christmas presents. She works with Flood Brook School to ensure each of the 70 children in the program is signed up for two gifts, including one that is clothing and one that is a toy.

She makes sure that each child’s request is granted through church participation in the program. If for some reason a wished for gift is not received, she will ensure that the purchase is made so the child receives his or her two gifts, according to LVRS.

Barton is also a coordinator with the Fuel Aid Program, available to assist people in need of gas, propane, kerosene or heating oil. The program assists approximately 21 households.

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