WWU Food Pantry
The Associated Students is trying to raise money to expand WWU’s food pantry. There will be two locations: one in Birnam Wood, and one in the Viking Union. They will be open to all students. The VU location is already up and running, with pre-prepared meals and snacks; and the Birnam Wood location will have a kit style.
Studies have shown that nearly a quarter of all university students nationwide face some kind of food insecurity. Unhealthy food is much, much cheaper than healthy options. As cost-saving measures, many students turn to instant noodles or mac and cheese instead of salads and dishes made from scratch. While we are planning on stocking the food pantry with instant lunch options, the money raised in this fundraiser will go towards buying a fridge so that we can stock perishable food items. We are hoping to stock the pantry with produce grown in the AS Outback Farm in the summer and fall.
Even if students can afford basic food, it’s sometimes difficult for them to get to the store. The most accessible grocery store close to campus, Haggen, is also one of the more expensive in Bellingham. If students can take the bus to Fred Meyer or Winco, they then have to carry all their groceries back with them. Having several accessible food pantry locations on campus will be much easier for students since they’re on campus almost every day.
The money from this request would go towards stocking food in the pantry. The VU location is already up and running, and staff at Birnam Wood are working on that location. A survey done with Birnam Wood students has indicated that 68% of students living there would use the food pantry or direct a friend to use it.
This is something that will benefit many students. The above survey indicated that a majority of students at least knew someone else facing food insecurity. This will be a way for them to help their fellow students. People want to help each other. It’s a great project to support because it has the potential to benefit so many people. Even if we don’t make our goal, the money will still be used to buy food for students that need it. A donation of $5 could help alleviate a student’s food insecurity for a day.