The BC Pantry is providing more types of food

AK Pachla, Reporter

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The Renegade Pantry at Bakersfield College has been serving the student community with food assistance since 2009.  From their location between the bookstore and Campus Center, staff, faculty and student volunteers hold monthly distributions, helping students at both the Panorama and Delano campuses.

In its six years of operation, the Renegade Pantry has helped hundreds of students facing food insecurity.  Expansions to the program include the addition of Daily Bread, a program to make mid-morning snacks available to all students, provided through cooperation with Panera Bread.

But the pantry has only just begun to fulfill its mission to help those students forced to maintain too tight of budgets in these uncertain economic times.

Recently, the Renegade Pantry has sealed a deal with the Bakersfield Gleaners to offer fresh fruits and vegetables every Thursday as a part of Daily Bread.

The pantry is also planning to run a free clothing shop once a month for students to exchange or offload excess or unwanted clothing.

This will be in addition to the already existing part of the program that helps students who need formal business attire to put their best foot forward at interviews and on the job.

“Due to Homecoming, we got a lot of (clothing) donations,” said pantry coordinator David Guinto, “so now we want to get it together and set up a distribution date for students to come and look… and to make donations.”

This part of the program is still in the planning stages, but will be available soon.  When the clothing distribution starts, it will also take place at the Renegade Pantry location.

The next deadline date for food assistance from the pantry is Dec. 4.  The distribution date is Dec. 10.

Students interested in receiving a food pack may either sign up in the Office of Student Life in Campus Center 4, or visit the pantry’s page on the BC website (www.BakersfieldCollege.edu/campus/pantry).

Students, families, and other people in the community who would like to help out with the pantry’s mission may donate clothing, food, or money either in person at the pantry or in the Office of Student Life, or visit the Bakersfield College Foundation page on the BC website and selecting “Renegade Pantry” from the dropdown list of available beneficiaries.

Any and all help is appreciated.  “Volunteers help out a lot,” says Guinto.  He said sometimes it’s a struggle to try and keep up with the need, but with the support of the Renegade community, “it’s going pretty good so far.”

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