Creating a personal choice in food assistance.
August 6, 2009 § 2 Comments
“Visiting the local food [pantry] has always been viewed as somewhat of an impersonal experience chalk [sic] full of long lines, barren walls and sunken faces. You show up, wait your turn and then, if you’re lucky, receive a few grocery bags full of post-expiration goods.
It is this routine that sometimes causes people to avoid taking advantage of a food [pantry’s] services, even if they desperately need them.”
He also shares how food pantries are shifting from an “institutional” experience to a “super market style” to help create a more enjoyable experience for those needing food assistance. We agree. Glenda Shayne, CAFB’s VP of Community Programs, shares the positive effects of a “client choice” food pantry that CAFB runs in east Austin.
“At the Capital Area Food Bank’s East Austin Service Center, each guest is greeted and escorted through rows and shelves of food. They can choose three cans of vegetables, and they have a choice from various meats and other high-protein foods, too. We see the success of this pantry in their faces. The “client choice” model also reduces waste associated with pre-bagging and, most importantly, promotes the dignity and respect of each guest who walks through the door.”
The East Austin Service Center serves more than 650 families each month. Click here to volunteer.
Do you know of a new approach to food banking? Share with us in the comments section below.