What is a Food Pantry?

A food pantry is a distribution center where hungry families can get food. There are many different types of pantries, depending on the area and community.

Food pantries can be small operations that are found in rural areas, but they can also be big facilities near cities that help thousands of people per day.

Schools are often the best place for a food pantry because it’s easier for children and their families to get food. There are two types of food pantries: permanent locations and mobile.

The main difference between a food pantry and a food bank is that food banks are not for profit. Food banks store millions of pounds of food that will be delivered to local pantries.

Food pantries provide important resources like nutrition education, health screenings, food baskets and back-to-school supplies. The mission of a food pantry is to directly serve residents within a certain area.

Feeding America

Feeding America is a network of over 200 food banks and over 60,000 food pantries located throughout the U.S. It is the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization.

To be a part of this community and take action in your local community, visit the Feeding America website. You can help by volunteering your time, or by giving a donation.

Important Facts about Food Pantries

There may be some confusion about who can use food pantries, and how you qualify. Be sure that you know everything first so you can get the full benefits of these services.

You do not have to be on food stamps (SNAP) to use food pantries. SNAP is based on income but it does not limit the number of people in a family to use it.

SNAP benefits only last a family 2 weeks out of the month. Use food pantries first to ensure that everyone has enough, then SNAP can take care of the rest.

Food pantries also serve more than just pre-packaged canned goods. You can get things like dairy products, fresh fruit and vegetables, and frozen meat, to name a few.

Don’t let the name food pantry fool you.You can get so much more than food. There are other things too, like paper products, school supplies, and personal care items.

Some food pantries will let you visit there multiple times a month. If you think you can’t go back to a food pantry because you already went this month, think again. Many pantries don’t keep count of who visits.