Kutztown University receives grant to support campus food pantry for students in need

Kutztown University received a $7,000 grant from Swipe Out Hunger, the leading national nonprofit working to end college student food insecurity, to support campus food pantries. Swipe Out Hunger awarded more than $420,000 across 102 colleges.

This money will allow campuses to fund priority programs specific to each pantry, including but not limited to; expanding food offerings to accommodate students’ dietary and cultural needs, providing funding for student volunteers and staff, acquiring cold storage for perishable and fresh items, investing in new technology for their pantry operations, expanding outreach through pop-up pantries throughout campuses and delivering groceries and meals to students in need.

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At KU, the Bear Essentials Pantry, the on-campus food pantry located in the McFarland Student Union and run by the Office of Student Involvement, provides non-perishable food items to students in need. The university also has a partnership with Friend, Inc., a local non-profit agency serving Northeastern Berks County, which provides a satellite food pantry adjacent to campus and critical support services to students in need.

With the rapidly growing demand at campus food pantries and other food security programs across the country, Swipe Out Hunger’s primary goal for this year’s grants is to equitably distribute funds by strategically prioritizing the campuses with the highest need using relevant data provided by the schools.

Swipe Out Hunger is thrilled to continue providing much needed additional funding to even more campuses. This is the single largest investment cycle Swipe Out Hunger has made in its history. Since 2021, the organization has distributed more than $720,000, with this current grant cycle accounting for more than half of their total award amount. These grants are made possible thanks to the support of Swipe Out Hunger’s philanthropic partners including Campus Specialties Inc. and MicroFridge, The GIANT Company and Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation.

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“We’re incredibly proud to more than double our grant distribution this year thanks to the dedicated support of our partners, and we hope to continue increasing these grants for our campuses,” said Jaime Hansen, executive director at Swipe Out Hunger. “In alignment with our organizational values, our focus is to promote equity and justice in grant allocation. By prioritizing typically overlooked schools that experience greater need, we’re able to make a bigger impact.”

Swipe Out Hunger is one of the leading national nonprofits committed to ending college student hunger. Swipe Out Hunger collaborates with colleges and universities to promote on-campus solutions, policy and advocacy, and community building practices to address students impacted by food insecurity. Since 2010, Swipe Out Hunger has enabled 6.8 million meals across more than 750 campuses in all 50 states and Canada. For more information, visit swipehunger.org.

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Berks Weekly
Berks Weekly
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