The School Street Food Pantry is the recipient of a $20,000 grant from the John M. Scott Health Care Trust to combat food insecurity for McLean County college students.
The pantry, located in the First United Methodist Church in Normal, was founded by a joint effort of community members, the Normal Township, and Illinois State University students.
Studies have found that food insecurity—or not knowing from where the next meal is coming—could impact nearly half of college students in the United States.
“The Commission is pleased to offer this grant to School Street Food Pantry as the only organization in McLean County known to be actively targeting college student food security,” said Holly Ambuehl, chair of the Scott Health Care Commission which advises the trustee about how to spend money in the trust. “We expect this grant to support related goals and outcomes in the McLean County Community Health Improvement Plan, which was a requirement for all applicants.”
The 16-month grant will go toward capital improvements, including purchasing a new refrigerator and freezer for the pantry. “We’re grateful for the opportunity to increase the services we provide to area college and trade school students,” said Terri Thede, a member of the board for the School Street Food Pantry.
Thede noted the grant will also allow the pantry to provide a greater array of fresh produce, along with food and personal hygiene items donated from the community and area food banks.
This is the inaugural year for grants from the John M. Scott Health Care Trust. The Bloomington City Council, which is the Trustee, approved grants recommended by the Scott Health Commission totaling more than $1.2 million to 21 area organizations through fiscal year 2022.
The School Street Food Pantry is open every Friday from 4-6 p.m. at the church, located at 211 North School St. in Normal. More information, including food drop-off and volunteering, can be found on the School Street Food Pantry website, or by emailing email@example.com.
Find more information on the John M. Scott Health Care Trust.