Mobilizing to Meet the Need
This article originally appeared in the Nov/Dec/Jan 2018-19 issue of The Voice.
On Wednesday, October 3, The Partnership for a Hunger Free Polk County dedicated two new mobile food pantries at the Ellis I. Levitt Boys & Girls Club at Carver Elementary in Des Moines.
The two new mobile food pantries were made possible thanks to the generosity of Gregory and Suzie Glazer Burt, Charlotte and Fred Hubbell, Variety-the Children’s Charity, and The Partnership for a Hunger Free Polk County.
The additional mobile food pantries will allow DMARC to reach more locations at a higher frequency, and to reach underserved populations such as children at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa (BGCCI).
“I am so proud to join Hunger Free and DMARC with a donation on behalf of myself and my late husband Greg, and to help Polk County residents who struggle to feed themselves and their families,” said Suzie Glazer Burt. “These new mobile pantries will serve hungry children throughout our community by partnering with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Iowa.”
One of the mobile food pantries will be designed specifically to cater to children, with art murals adorning the walls, more accessible shelving, and single-serving food items that make choosing a healthy snack the easy choice.
Childhood nutrition is especially important to us, as we know that inadequate nutrition can harm a child’s development and performance in school.
“We know that hungry children simply aren’t able to succeed academically and reach the great futures they deserve. That’s why we’re honored to be a part of this incredible community partnership,” said BGCCI CEO Jodie Warth. “Not only will our Boys & Girls Club families be able to access fresh foods from the mobile pantries, but they’ll also learn about nutrition and how to make critical healthy food choices.”
Research has shown that hunger can affect a student’s cognition, attention-span, and their ability to learn. Undernourished children are also more likely to get sick, miss school, and exhibit behavioral issues in the classroom.
The addition of the new mobile food pantries will provide healthy food to more children and their families who are living with food insecurity.
By focusing our services to meet the specific needs of children, we hope to instill healthy eating habits and teach valuable nutrition skills that will last a lifetime.
The new DMARC Mobile Food Pantries will begin operation in the following months, with numerous new partnerships already being established for possible mobile food pantry locations.
DMARC thanks the generosity of Gregory and Suzie Glazer Burt, Charlotte and Fred Hubbell, Variety-the Children’s Charity, and The Partnership for a Hunger Free Polk County for making the new mobile food pantries a reality.