By Kate Grabowski, Communications Intern
12.2 percent of Delaware’s population are considered food insecure. To help meet demands for healthy food, the Food Bank of Delaware recently opened its new Healthy Pantry Center at the Newark headquarters. The Healthy Pantry Center is a mini grocery store within the Food Bank’s new facility at 222 Lake Drive in Newark. The Pantry Center gives individuals and families the opportunity to pick out food and household products that best suit their needs.
Using a point system based on household size, the pantry center caters specifically to each shopper. Not only does the Pantry Center organize itself on a point system, it is also arranged to encourage healthy eating.
While still giving shoppers the freedom to choose their products, the Pantry Center motivates a selection of more nutrient-dense options by displaying easy-to-read nutrition facts and making the healthier options the least amount of points.
Since the pantry opened in early June, shoppers have been thankful for the opportunity to utilize this much needed service!
A visitor last week was out of work due to a back injury and noted how helpful the groceries will be during her time of need. She said she never thought she would need assistance as she has always worked in the medical field.
Another pantry visitor works full time, but her income simply does not make ends meet. Keeping her kitchen full is difficult with a 15-year-old son who has a big appetite.
A retired senior citizen visited the pantry several weeks ago and was so thankful for the assistance. She said she will finally be able to invite friends over for dinner – something she had not been able to do in years.
Typically, customers leave the pantry with an entire grocery cart filled with both perishable and nonperishable items. Visitors to the Newark pantry are asked to bring more than six reusable grocery bags to take food home.
To learn more about the Food Bank of Delaware’s Healthy Pantry Center or to make an appointment for a Saturday in Newark, please contact Kim Dickerson at (302) 292-1205 ext 227 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Milford branch has also started distributing directly to the public! Visitors receive boxes of shelf -stable food, non-food items, fresh produce, bread and frozen meat.
Pantry hours are:
Newark (222 Lake Drive, Newark, DE 19702) Entrance is at the back of the building near the loading ramp. Enter first glass door.
- Monday-Friday: 7:30am to 3:30pm
- Third Thursday 7:30am to 7:00pm
- Saturdays 9:00am to noon by appointment (call (302) 292-1305 ext 227 for appointment)
Milford (1040 Mattlind Way, Milford, DE 19963) Enter building through side door near garage doors and loading dock.
- Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays: 8am-4pm;
- Tuesdays: 8am -7pm;
- 2nd Saturday 9am-12pm
Check out our video about the Healthy Pantry Center in Newark!