By Juan Rodriguez:
The AC Pantry provides non-perishable food as well as clothes and other accessories to anyone in the AC community who may need a little extra help. The pantry provides these services for students who may face difficult decisions financially.
AC opened the pantry in 2012 after a faculty member saw students confronted with choices between paying for gasoline or paying for food.
Since the college has opened the pantry, pantries at the East and West Campuses have opened as well. The pantry is donation-based, whether it is cash or actual goods such as food or clothes.
“We are here to serve students the best we can which means stopping any barrier that may prevent a student from being successful,” Jordan Herrera, director of social services, said.
The pantry provided food and goods for up to 300 students just last month and received over 500 visits regarding the pantry throughout January. As of last year, another social worker was hired full-time for the AC pantry due to the increase of donations and students visiting.
Students can choose items based on his or her needs twice a month and fill a grocery bag with nonperishable goods.
“Needs are absolutely being met,” Judith Lara, the social services assistant, said. “We provide assistance with tuition, transportation, utilities and car repairs.”
Rene Granados was one of three students who was on the verge on dropping out of college in 2016 due to difficult decisions, but with the help of the pantry, Granados went on to graduate college. The goal for the pantry is to make sure students never leave empty-handed.
The pantry is located inside the Ware Student Commons in the Resource Center Room 108 on the Washington Street Campus. Donations may be made through the AC Foundation. For more information please contact Herrera or visit www.actx.edu/socialservices.