News Local/State

U of I, Community College Open Food Pantries


The University of Illinois has opened a food pantry on campus that specifically caters to college students.

The pantry is open the second and fourth Wednesdays of the month at the St. John Catholic Newman Center on the U of I’s Urbana campus.

Sister Maryann Schaefer helps run the pantry with the help of a group of student volunteers.

“I think it will help bring down the barrier of embarrassment when you’re talking about peer-to-peer rather than an adult situation handing out to students,” Schaefer said.

Schaefer explained that in order to get assistance, all people have to do is show their student identification, and promise that they are not earning 185 percent of the government drawn poverty line.

“It’s a growing trend throughout the United States on campuses that students who get into their upper classes and graduate classes are finding themselves stretched for money in order to pay for rent, gas, electric, as well as paying for food on the table,” she said.

Campus food pantries have popped up across the country to help students who don't have enough money to cover their expenses and keep themselves well-fed. Another pantry is slated to open soon on the Parkland College campus in Champaign.