Self-select pantry offers support
We have operated a local food pantry since the organization’s inception in 1972. The goal of Hunger Prevention Programs is to ensure that all people in our community have consistent, dependable access to enough food for active, healthy living. Due to space constraints at the former office space, we were able to offer two pre-packed grocery bags of food staples distributed out of a small closet. One of the things we were most excited about in moving to our current facility was the ability to operate a walk through, self-select food pantry.
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, we were forced to close our building down to almost all visitors, while at the same time saw huge increases in need for food resources. To accommodate, safely, we had to revert to pre-packing and utilizing a drive up system.
Starting in the fall of 2021, as soon as it was safe to do so, we reopened our self-select, walk through pantry. This arrangement gives our participants the autonomy to select food that works best for their family and household. You simply cannot overstate the importance of personal choice in promoting self-efficacy when a family is able to shop and choose items specifically for their family. We continue to see an increased hunger need locally, and are looking at a 13%-15% increase in 2022 when compared to 2020 and 2021 numbers for our Hunger Prevention Programs.
Our self-select food pantry is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.