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HCC Expands Food Pantry and Garden Program Thanks to Girl Scout Donation

Food pantry shelf

On Saturday, April 23, 2022, Girl Scout Troup 10329 presented Howard Community College (HCC) with money raised to provide fresh and healthy food options for HCC’s Fueling Dragons Program and Grow-It Forward Program. Both of these programs are a part of the college’s larger efforts to address food insecurity among students and their families.

"The Girl Scout’s project focused on providing healthy, fresh food to our pantry. Their support of HCC’s garden hoop house will help us extend the growing season by two months by providing fruits and vegetables to HCC’s campus pantry,” said Anne Johnson, Director of Resources Development at HCC. “Supporting our ability to grow fruits and vegetables is essential to the program's success. It helps our students and encourages them to try new vegetables while they learn lifelong cooking skills."

HCC’s food pantry is organized to teach students to make healthier choices, cook, and develop life skills through educational experiences and workshops. The pantry gives over 2,300 pounds of a variety of frozen meats and vegetables, fresh and non-perishable goods each month to students in need.

At the event Missy Mattey, executive director of the college’s educational foundation, gave remarks on the need for resources like the college’s food pantry and how Girl Scout Troop 10329 donation will help improve the college’s garden.

“When you are hungry, it impacts your daily life. It impacts your thoughts, your mood, your energy level, any number of things,” Mattey said. “And when you are in college and you are trying to get your degree and move your life forward, put yourself out there in the workforce, food insecurity can become a huge barrier towards students’ success.”

After the Girl Scout Troop 10329 presented the college with a check for $800, Michelle Anderson, HCC’s gardener, took them on a tour of the garden and explained how it supports the college’s food pantry. During the tour, girl scouts helped Anderson prepare and plant carrots in the garden.

“Part of what is so exciting about this moment in our food pantry and garden is that we can increase the diversity of foods and fresh items that are available to our students.” Anderson said. “With this generous funding and through volunteer work, we can expand the amount of time that students are in the garden working and learning towards understanding healthy foods and sustainable practices, which will help develop life long practices.”

Are you interested in supporting the college’s food pantry and garden? Volunteers can host a food drive, volunteer at the pantry, or participate in a service learning opportunity to benefit the pantry. Contact pantry@howardcc.edu to learn more.

Topics: Success Stories
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