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Food Bank’s Campus Pantry Program


Since 2012, Food Bank’s Campus Pantry program has partnered with K-12 schools and colleges across the five boroughs to establish on-site food pantries for students and families so that they can directly access the balanced, nutritious food they need to thrive.

Each Campus Pantry site provides students and parents with healthy staples like canned protein, fresh and canned produce, and shelf-stable grain products. Though Food Bank supplies the food, each school is responsible for staffing its own pantry, creating distribution hours, managing budgets, and conducting administrative duties.

Meet Juana, a parent who visits
Food Bank’s Campus Pantry at P.S. 19Q

Juana is a parent at P.S. 19Q in Corona, Queens. She takes time out of her workday each week to visit the Food Bank Campus Pantry at the school, which helps her fill up her own pantry between paychecks. If it weren’t for the school’s campus pantry program – which serves one of the largest elementary school populations in the United States – Juana’s not sure how she would feed herself and her family. Watch the video above to hear her story.

PS 19Q is one of the largest elementary schools in America, and at least a third of the students there live below the poverty line. The school has one of the highest numbers of newly-arrived immigrant families in the five boroughs. Thankfully, PS 19Q is a community school with a Campus Pantry and other resources to help address the great need. When we asked Juana what the Campus Pantry gives her, she smiled and replied with a single word, peace.
That’s during the school year. But what happens in the summer? The next Campus Pantry here won’t be until the fall. For many parents we spoke with, the summer is a season of uncertainty, but it doesn’t have to be…

Food Bank has helped over 50 K-12 schools establish on-site Campus Pantries. Through this program, schools receive shelf-stable food items, fresh produce, and frozen products. Some schools also receive household hygiene products that help families to further stretch their budgets.
Prior to the pandemic, a staggering 30 percent of all college students experienced food insecurity at some point in their college careers.  Due to many university campus closures, vital services such as food assistance were also reduced or frozen for students in need. College-aged individuals between 18 and 24 were also the most likely to experience unemployment during the pandemic. Food Bank’s Campus Pantry program supports over 25 colleges throughout New York City to help fight back against student hunger.

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252 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026

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