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Weber Cares Pantry needs some love

The Weber Cares Pantry is asking for help to replenish its food supplies during a semester of low donations and high need for food security.

Weber Cares Food Pantry. (Marissa Wolford / The Signpost)
Weber Cares Food Pantry. (Marissa Wolford / The Signpost) Photo credit: Signpost Archives

The pantry is available for students and any others with a Weber State University ID card to pick up free food supplies, no questions asked. Since 2011, the Weber Cares program “has strived to increase healthy eating options, decrease food insecurity” and increase the ability of students to stay on the path to graduation, according to a handout for the pantry.

Normally staffed by several student volunteers, restrictions mean the pantry is currently being primarily staffed by just one: Rebecca Wolford, a freshman majoring in vocal performance. She receives the online requests, fills the orders and arranges pickup times.

“There is a lot of food insecurity on campus that we just do not see or realize,” Wolford said. “I want to stress that we are still open, and we do want to help people in any way we can.”

As a natural result of low campus activity, Weber Cares has not been getting the usual support but is still crucial to some students, faculty and staff who have been affected by uncertain times. Wolford said a majority of those who use the pantry right now are students living in the dorms.

One factor may be that this fall, on-campus eating options have been limited due to lower than normal student traffic. Stone Pizza, Noodle and the Wildcat Room closed when campus shut down in March and have not reopened since, and other restaurants in the food court are open for smaller windows of time. Tres Habaneros is now closed on Fridays. Resident dining area, The Den, is open for dinner Monday though Friday and brunch and dinner on weekends.

In the past, students have reached out to organize food drives for Weber Cares.

“It has been really, really nice to get those donations,” Wolford said. “I wish we were able to have more volunteers and more people to help and serve.”

Also due to pandemic restrictions, the pantry has not been able to use refrigeration and has been limited to receiving and distributing nonperishables. Wolford hopes restrictions will end soon so the pantry will go back to having more options, and said that the pantry hopes to move from the current location in the student union to the library, where there will be more room for resources.

The pantry does not want students, faculty or staff to be hesitant in seeking needed help with food security due to embarrassment, perceived stigma or any other reason.

“There is zero judgment,” Wolford said. “We just want people to be able to get what they need.”

Nonperishable donations can be dropped off at the Center for Community Engaged Learning in the Shepherd Union Building Monday through Friday after contacting [email protected] or 801-626-7737.

Orders can be made online at All students and WSU personnel can receive up to 2 bags of food and resources each week. Those in need of same-day emergency food can contact [email protected].

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