It takes an entire network of partners to distribute more than 8.6 million pounds of food to Delawareans in need each year. Thanks to partnerships with 509 organizations up and down the state, the Food Bank of Delaware is getting food into the hands of those who need it most. One of those partners is the Claymont Community Center.
The community center provides a variety of resources to residents in the Claymont area. An important resource is the community food pantry. The pantry is available to households in need who live in zipcodes 19703, 19808, 19809, and 19810. The food closet is open to those who need emergency food assistance by appointment only.
The food pantry entrance is tucked in the back of the building to provide privacy for clients. Over the past several years, the organization has worked hard to make the food pantry a warm and inviting place. The community center was a recent recipient of a Food Lion Feeds Great Pantry Makeover.
The once dark, dingy pantry, is now bright and welcoming!
“We wanted to improve the experience and make a place that is warm, inviting and dignified,” said Claymont Community Center Chief Executive Officer Allison David, “People shouldn’t feel bad to ask for help.”
Thanks to the generosity of local Food Lion volunteers, the pantry now features a new freezer and a fresh coat of paint. Food Lion volunteers also cleaned, performed general maintenance in the pantry and stocked the shelves and freezer. A refrigerator was generously donated by Walmart.
In addition to the donations from Food Lion and Walmart, volunteers from the community center built new shelves, planted outdoor flower and herb pots, covered electrical boxes with shutters and more.
Cecelia Miranda runs the food closet. “We want to be of service to people,” she said.
Last year the Claymont Community Center food pantry had close to 1,900 visits. To keep the shelves stocked, the pantry relies on donations from the community, Food Lion, Trader Joe’s and Wawa. In addition, the organization depends on its partnerships with the Food Bank of Delaware and USDA.
Thanks to this assistance, families receive a variety of nutritious foods from the pantry including nonperishables, fresh fruits and vegetables, frozen meats and more.
Volunteers are critical to making the operation run smoothly. Cecelia and her team rely on volunteers to pick up food donations from local stores, stock shelves, make food bags, distribute food and more.
In addition to the food pantry, the community center also participates in the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, a monthly USDA food program for Delaware seniors over the age of 60. On the first Friday of each month, seniors in need of assistance pick up a box full of nutritious food from the center.
To volunteer or assist the Claymont Community Center food pantry, please contact Cecelia Miranda at (302) 792-2757 ext. 167 or CeceliaMiranda@ClaymontCenter.org.
Check out some before and after photos of the new and improved food pantry!