Since March of 2020, Weber State University’s Weber Cares Pantry has been closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but on Sept. 7, the pantry officially reopened its doors to in-person services.
During the past year and a half, the food pantry has moved locations and is now located in room 224 of the Stewart Library. This new space is much larger than the old location and allows for more food to be provided.
Jordan Wheeler, Weber Cares Pantry specialist, says that they have found a new space in a larger room, allowing clients to pick out their own orders.
While the pantry’s services are based on household size, the new space gives students and non-students alike access to more food.
“I love when clients come in. At first, they are so nervous because it’s a hard thing to do,” Wheeler said. “You feel like you will be judged by someone else, but that’s not the case.”
Patrick Tadlock, assistant director of the Center for Community Engaged Learning, has been the food pantry staff supervisor since June 2021. Tadlock stated that the pantry closed from March to September 2021, allowing the staff to work on their online order platform.
According to Wheeler, the pantry was still taking online orders in September despite not being open to in-person orders.
The benefits of this new location include more space, more food and even refrigerated foodstuffs available for any person who needs it.
“We want students, staff and faculty to see us as a resource for everyone on our campus,” Tadlock said.
The food pantry is under the umbrella of WSU’s CCEL program, and has a mission to let people on campus know that they are here, and no one on campus should go hungry.
Wheeler, a sophomore, explained that a lot of people on campus are either just trying to start careers or don’t have a lot of extra money floating around, so a food pantry is a basic staple for any campus.
“We won’t turn anyone away,” Wheeler said.