Ellie Ocel/The Broadside
NeighborImpact’s mobile food pantry will be on COCC’s Bend campus on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month. Named the Fresh to You truck, this mobile pantry will be in Barber Library’s parking lot from noon to 1 p.m. on those days.
The Fresh to You truck will provide access to a variety of perishable food that stationary food pantries cannot offer. When it first showed up to campus on Feb. 8, it offered bell peppers, apples, celery, eggs, and other fresh and healthy food. Both students and community members are welcome to come and take food.
COCC currently has a food pantry through ASCOCC, but it can only provide nonperishable food. By partnering with NeighborImpact to provide perishable food, COCC is offering a wider variety of food to people who need it.
“This is an amazing opportunity for students to get fresh food on-campus, in addition to anything they might need from the food pantry,” said Lindsay Buccafurni, Assistant Director of Student Life. She believed food can be an issue for all students, and having a regularly scheduled truck on campus would cut some existing barriers to food access.
Jordan Reeher, Program Coordinator at NeighborImpact, said that the company is in the process of expanding their mobile pantry program. NeighborImpact decided to partner with COCC because college student’s food availability isn’t what it should be, and Reeher wanted to help increase that availability.
Reeher said that many people have a need for produce, meal staples, and other food that they may skimp on at the grocery store due to prices. The mobile pantry provides for those needs.
“We want [people] to come even if they’ve never been to a food resource before,” said Reeher. He elaborated that NeighborImpact is not worried at all about running out of food, so anybody who needs food should come to the mobile pantry.
NeighborImpact has several other distribution locations across Central Oregon. Visit this link for more information.