Clark State Community College will begin hosting the Second Harvest Food Bank Mobile Food Pantry on a monthly basis.
“I initially contacted the Second Harvest Food Bank and asked if they would attend the health fair, which they have been doing for several years,” said Roberta Richards, RN and Health Clinic nurse for Clark State. “Last year, they asked if they could also bring their mobile food bank to the health fair. We had such a great response that we began discussing the possibility of continuing the service on a monthly basis.”
Richards said Clark State’s primary concern is for the well-being of students, but the mobile food pantry service is available to anyone who meets the income criteria.
Former Clark State student and Wittenberg graduate Melissa Archambeau serves as coordinator of the Mobile Food Pantry which was on Clark State’s campus for a trial-run in October. With no advertising for the event, they served 48 families, a total of 161 individuals.
“The Clark State Health Clinic houses a small food pantry within the clinic, as well as a coat closet, for our students only,” said Richards. “This is the second semester for the clinic’s food pantry, and it is becoming more obvious to me that the need for basic necessities amongst our student population is greater than the clinic can support. Students need to be made aware of our community’s resources and how to access them.”
Funding from a grant has allowed Second Harvest to offer the Mobile Food Pantry at no cost to the hosts. “We really needed to get in that area,” said Archambeau. “There is a high rate of food insecurity in that area.”
The Mobile Food Pantry includes ten bays; six are refrigerated and include meats, dairy and produce. Produce pallets are provided by Gordon Food Service and local farmers during growing seasons. “We have good relationships in our community that allow us to give great produce directly to our client,” said Archambeau.
The Second Harvest Food Bank Mobile Food Pantry will be in the parking lot on Clark State’s Leffel Lane campus from 2 - 3 p.m. the first Wednesday of every month. Clients must self-report their income, bring picture ID, proof of current address (such as a bill or piece of mail, if address on ID is not current) and their own bags or boxes.