PHILLIPS — Town residents have formed a group to help those in need, similar to the service circles of yesterday. In the wake the COVID-19 pandemic, this felt like a good time to get something started.
The unofficial group is called Phillips Unites. Sharon Dudley created a Facebook page, www.facebook.com/groups/phillipsunites  and a volunteer sign-up list of community members who are willing to do the shopping and errands of those that are at risk and homebound.
Volunteers will go to the post office, the grocery store, the pharmacy, etc. A person in need only needs to call one of the volunteers and the service is provided. For those who do not have internet access, a list has been left at the Shadagee Apartments. Dudley also uses the Facebook page as a way for the community to communicate with one another about needs in the area.
Local carpenter Woodrow Rose made a Blessing Box, which is outside of the Phillips Public Library next to the Little Free Library. The Blessing Box holds non-perishable foods such as pasta, soup, vegetable, canned meats and such. On some days, fresh eggs, fresh baked bread and produce is left and then the giver posts on Facebook that it is there so that it does not spoil.
Local psychologist Susy Sanders, founder the annual Wonderland at Phillips Old Days, has been making craft kits with her Wonderland fairies for the young and young at heart. They are left on the front porch of the Phillips Public Library for those who want them. The activities have helped parents who are trying to keep their children occupied. There were some other fairies who donated new quality books for area children.
FOOD DRIVE IS MAY 30 AS NEED RISES
A food drive will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 30, at Edmunds Market in Phillips. The Phillips Area Food Pantry is in need of non-perishable items and toiletries. Dudley hopes that people will stop by while they are doing their Saturday morning chores and errands.
The Phillips Area Food Pantry is feeling the pinch. According to manager Dorrie White, there is about a 30% increase in those needing assistance. White has additional volunteers who are helping make deliveries to the Shadagee Apartments and to those who are shut in.
The Phillips Area Food Pantry has new temporary hours during the pandemic. It is open every 9 to 11 a.m. Thursday; the third Thursday of every month, it’s also open 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Those who would like to make a donation to the Food Pantry may leave it in the drop box at the food pantry, on Russell Street in Phillips.
TOP PHOTO: The Phillips United banner is displayed on the front of Susay and Dave Sanders house on Main Street. (Susy Sanders photo)