Being a teenager already has it’s ups and downs, but the stress of not having access everyday essentials can make things intolerable.

At Washington High School in Washington, North Carolina, staff came up with a creative solution to their poorest students’ toughest challenge: They created a secret pantry full of hygiene products such as deodorant, toothbrushes and toothpaste. But when the school’s principle, Misty Walker, saw that hygiene wasn’t the only problem her students were facing, the secret pantry expanded into a food, clothing, school supplies, and hygiene closet.

For the sake of anonymity, knowledge of the pantry is spread by world of mouth. Students are granted access to the closet if they ask a teacher, counselor or faculty member. They are then allowed to take as many items needed with no questions asked.

Would you like to see something like this in your area?

—Francesca Katafias