The need for assistance has grown over the years in every state and every age group.
In spring 2012, Amarillo College opened a food pantry to provide nonperishable food and toiletries to anyone in the AC community.
The pantry helps students focus on studies and not worry about how they will be feeding themselves.
“The need has grown every semester,” said Lynae Jacob, department chairwoman of speech and communication. “We have about 50 to 70 visits per month on the Washington Campus.”
The AC food pantry is supported by donations from students, staff and the community. Anyone is allowed to take food from the pantry up to two times a month.
The West Campus pantry is in 275 Jones Hall. The East Campus food pantry is moving to 136 Student Service Center.
“Since we opened, we have been able to help a variety of people at the East Campus,” said Melodie Graves, CTEC Division adviser. “The need of the people who depend on the pantry is continuing, and as a result we run out of everything quickly.”
In the first few months the East Campus pantry was open, it was not serving anyone. As the word got out, more and more people started coming to visit, and now it is serving a little more than 50 people a month.
With winter approaching, the pantry is anticipating that more food will be needed as the visitors increase.
“We are running low on everything in our pantry,” Graves said. “At this time we need noodles, box dinners, water, crackers, canned goods and any other food item that is nonperishable.”
The Washington Street Campus pantry is located in 206 Parcells Hall.
“More and more students are hearing about the availability of the pantry and are coming to us, so it is a little harder to keep it stocked up,” said Cindy Rannals, a speech communication administrative clerk. “We would like to stock the pantry with warm weather foods, such as canned chili, soups, stews and other hearty cold weather food choices.”
Winter will be making its way in soon, and the need for the pantries will grow even more, but some students still don’t know of the resource available to them.
“I was not aware that AC even had a food pantry,” said Anthony Christy, a business major. “I think that a pantry is a great thing, and even though I am not in need, I will be donating soon.”
Donations are accepted at any of the campuses.