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Bébhinn Mullins.

Clonmany Community Pantry.
Clonmany, Donegal.
Story of change Bébhinn Mullins. story
“If we all made small changes, we would have a seriously wonderful impact”


Meet Bébhinn, the manager of Clonmany Community Centre. Clonmany is a tiny town on the Inishowen peninsula but through Bébhinn’s sense of purpose, innovation and ambition, its community centre is having an immense impact.

The Clonmany Food Pantry – a project which diverts food from landfill to feed bellies not bins – is just one of Bébhinn’s numerous community-centric social enterprises. The idea for the pantry was born when Bébhinn was mortified to realise that the crab she was eating was not from down the road in Inishowen but from Indonesia. “That was my light-bulb moment and it was then that I knew I had to do something to make a change.’’

Bébhinn teamed up with Food Cloud, a food redistribution social enterprise, and the community pantry’s walk-in container now stores donations which are perfectly edible but were headed for landfill due to barcode errors, damaged packaging, overordering or misbranding.

After paying an annual membership fee of 15 euro, the community can fill their bags full of groceries and leave with a box of cereal under one arm and a bag of spuds under the other, all for 5 euro a pop. That money is then reinvested back into the pantry. “It’s a project that makes a positive contribution to both people and our planet. The pantry addresses the climate consideration of our food and encourages us to become more ethical eaters.”

The pantry has sparked a spin-off project at Galway University, where more than 70 students each day are given access to nutritional, affordable food. And Bébhinn and the Clonmany team are not stopping there. They have teamed up with the local housing dependency unit and the elderly house residence to create a community garden, where they will grow produce for the pantry and their newly opened café. Just another of Bébhinn’s thriving projects which are driven by people and the planet, not profit.


The pantry is a successful project that can be replicated in towns all over Ireland to address the issue of food waste and make good food accessible to more people.


The purpose of the pantry stretches beyond reducing and repurposing food waste. It has created an important space for the community to meet, share recipes, swap seeds, trade jams, and catch up.


Be an ethical eater. Educate yourself on what is available and when. Source locally when you can, or grow your own.


What gives me hope is listening to the impact this grassroots project has had on my community. Small projects like this have a big impact. It makes people question, think, and make changes that are sustainable for them and the planet.


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To find out more visit or follow the centre on Instagram: @clonmanycentre