Pantry of Angels – 2015 Summary
Located at the Presho United Methodist Church
1727 Indian Hills Rd, Painted Post, NY 14870
(Mailing address: P.O. Box 60, Lindley, NY 14858)
Pantry of Angels serves residents of Lindley and Caton. The Pantry is open every Thursday (except major holidays) from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., serving fresh produce and baked goods. On the 2nd and 4th weeks of each month, January through October, staple foods are also available. During November and December, the staple foods distribution occurs on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays, due to holidays. Nutritional goods from all of the food groups are available to those who come or call for food assistance and, in many cases, food delivery.
2015 was yet another year of growth in clientele and food distributed for the Pantry of Angels. 10,370 food bundles were distributed, each being at least a 3-day supply for each individual. Households served totaled 3,384. These numbers are up 12% from 9,252 and 3,026, respectively, in 2014. In 2015, 151 food insecure households with 485 individuals received services, compared to 119 households and 444 individuals in 2014. Calls for emergency food were received 30 times, comprising 143 individuals, versus 331 families with 170 individuals in 2014. (Non-residents are then referred to their local service agencies for ongoing support, as out-of-area emergency food allotments are available only once per year.)
In 2015, just over 67,000 pounds of food products were donated to the Pantry by Wegmans, Tops, Peaches & Cream, organizations and individuals. In addition, government grants and monetary donations allowed for purchase of 69,000 pounds of food items from the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. That is a lot of poundage (136,000) for volunteers to move in, out and around as needed to serve the food-insecure in our community.
The Pantry of Angels hosted monthly Just Say Yes to Fruits and Vegetables cooking demonstrations conducted by the Food Bank of the Southern Tier. These classes allow clients the opportunity to discuss any food related topics they may have, as well as learn about nutritious foods they may not be familiar with and alternative cooking/preparation methods. Each class was a good time for all who attended.
Pantry of Angels offers 100% volunteer-provided services. There are approximately 30 regular volunteers, in addition to our 10 volunteer Board of Directors, with another 12 to 15 occasional/when needed volunteers. Of these, the 18 Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) people serving at our Pantry alone accumulated over 5,000 hours in 2015. Volunteers also conduct various fund raising activities, raising additional money to purchase more food for distribution to clients.
Besides picking up foodstuffs at local grocery stores at least three times each week, volunteers also deliver food to clients. There are approximately 30 households on the 3-4 delivery routes. Every week, nearly 200 miles are accumulated by multiple volunteers at their own expense. Volunteers work together in this common effort, developing friendships and a joyful atmosphere at all pantry activities. Without all the dedicated volunteers, addressing hunger in our community would not be feasible.
God has truly blessed the Pantry of Angels with all the tangible and intangible components needed to maintain and grow this mission. He continues to watch over us and hold each hand as we strive to serve Him and fulfill this need in our community.