NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Leaders of a South Nashville church say a blessing box has turned more into a curse attracting illegal dumping.

The Wingate Church of Christ has hosted the blessing box off Thompson Lane for about five years, but now they say it has to go. 

The free little pantry stocked with goods from neighbors to help those in need started as a loving community project, but has become a job to maintain. Often you will find couches, mattresses and other junk piled around the box in the church parking lot. 

“To the people that dump here you’ve ruined a really good thing and that’s really sad,” Sherry McCall President of the Glencliff Neighborhood Association explained. 

This small, orange, hand-painted box has still served its purpose in the Woodbine community. 

“It’s not just a blessing to the people who come here and get food out, but it’s been a blessing to people to have a place to give, to feel they are investing in their community and they are helping people who need help so it goes both ways,” said McCall. 

She likes to do her part in keeping the shelves stocked, but over the last year, the blessing box has also drawn piles of junk turning the site into a disgrace to neighbors.  

“The box says what we will and won’t take — no clothing, no furniture — but yes they dump everything; toys, furniture. I believe one time there was actually a toilet here that somebody had dropped some construction stuff off,” McCall shook her head. 

Hauling off the junk has become a regular job for church leaders who are fed up. 

“They can’t handle the amount of trash that’s being brought there versus how much is being done by the blessing box. It’s sad,” said Drew Hoffman who lives nearby. 

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The dumping issues spread across the district littering parks and greenways — a disheartening site for those that call the area home.

“Mattresses, box springs, trash, glass, you name it. Tires… it’s whatever you can throw out the back of your vehicle” Hoffman explained. 

Now, those actions ruining what was meant to do good for the neighborhood, leaving these neighbors praying the mission isn’t over. 

“The blessing box does need a home so if you have a place at your church, your school, call us and let us know where we can take the blessing box, and hopefully, it will bless other people,” said McCall. 

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Church leaders say they are looking at other ways they can help the community while hoping the box finds a new spot.