Volunteers at Pantry 279 were restocking shelves early this week after nearly running out of food last week.
Volunteers said they want the community to know how grateful they are for the donations of food and money to help feed others. Volunteer coordinator Felicia Nunn said she’s so overwhelmed by the community’s generosity.
Nunn told the Bloomingtonian she left the food pantry in tears last week after there was nothing left to offer but some green beans, potato chips, and pistachios.
Another volunteer, Christina Bell, told the Bloomingtonian they wouldn’t send themselves to the pantry for those items.
A post went up telling the community the pantry wouldn’t open last Saturday because of the supply shortage.
Part of the issue has been supply chain issues, as supermarkets have run out of items, donations didn’t arrive like they had in the past. Volunteers said they’d been watching the pantry’s reserves dwindle until finally they had nothing to offer. However, they said they are very grateful for the supplies that arrive several times each week from Hoosier Hills.
Two trucks arrive Mondays, one Tuesday, and two more each Wednesday from the HHFB, according to volunteers.
Food was distributed this week and will be distributed Saturday.
Cindy Chavez of Pantry 279 said the response from the community was shocking. 10000 to 15000 items and several thousand dollars flowed in after the pantry asked for help. Chavez said they were able to work with Kroger at College Mall to buy 5000-dollars in food items, and the grocery store is working on finding more items for purchase.
Area 4H groups, scout groups, schools, and organizations like the Indiana University College Democrats are running impromptu food drives.
Chavez said Pantry 279 has been able to begin refilling its emergency food reserves, which were completely empty since December.
Chavez says the pantry goes through many items but has been able to stay open to help those in the community needing food.
Those wishing to donate can send money to Pantry 279’s Paypal: [email protected]
There is also a donate button on the organization’s page: www.pantry279.org
The pantry’s Venmo is: @pantry279 – but choose the one saying “Cindy Chavez” as the other is fake.
Other contacts for Pantry 279: Pantry 279 P.O. Box 312, Ellettsville, IN 47429
Phone: 812 -606-1524
Email: [email protected]