The Full Plate Food Pantry gets a new home at Three Rivers Community College

Food Pantry OpeningThree Rivers Community College is excited to announce that The Full Plate Food Pantry has a new permanent location. Since its founding in 2012, The Full Plate has been a resource for food-insecure members of the Three Rivers community. The new location, which officially opened on December 7, will improve accessibility, visibility, and offer room for growth to help those in need.

From its first year, the food pantry has held Thanksgiving food drives. Beginning in 2012 and continuing through 2017, the Full Plate has provided over 30 complete Thanksgiving dinners to anyone in the Three Rivers community who was in need. In addition to the Thanksgiving dinners, The Full Plate is open during the fall and spring semester, providing food to those who need it. Monetary and food donations by faculty, staff, students and student organizations keep the pantry’s shelves stocked.

During the past four years, The Full Plate Food Pantry has operated out of a very small shared conference room. The new location, D111-A, is dedicated solely to the Pantry’s use and is expected to help the food pantry grow. The new location should expand awareness for both individuals who could use it as well as for those who would like to volunteer and donate.

President Mary Ellen Jukoski says, “The food pantry at TRCC is very important to the welfare of our students. Many of our students come to the college hungry and need the assistance of the food pantry to help them and their families. My hope is that this new space will provide a comfortable place to help more students.”

Long-time Chair of the Food Pantry Task Force, Professor Janet Hagen explains why the pantry was so necessary. “We are able to provide food options for students and their families. Recent statistics show that two-thirds of community college students suffer from food insecurity and about 15% are homeless.

Our motto is ‘no student should go hungry,’ especially not in class. If a student is hungry or doesn’t know where their next meal will come from or how they will feed their family, we can, at least temporarily, help. By doing so, students will be able to focus more on their academics, which, in turn, leads to higher success rates. We also put out snacks and water in our pantry so a student who is on the run can pop in and grab a nutritional snack, like crackers and peanut butter, before class.”

Hagen oversees The Full Plate along with the Food Pantry Task Force, which is made up of three faculty members and two staff members. For more information on the food pantry, please contact Janet Hagen at 860-215-9433.

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