Editor's Note: The following is a press release from the .
What started as a conversation about how to serve clients better has turned into an innovative approach to hunger relief. The Eagan and Lakeville Resource Center’s new Mobile Pantry will be rolling out to neighborhoods with fresh, healthy foods for families in need of food support. Starting in September, the refurbished short bus will be traveling to designated neighborhood sites for clients to come and select the foods their families need.
“What’s amazing about Mobile Pantry is that we are able to take food support directly to neighborhoods that need it,” said Sarah Schmidt, Fresh Food Coordinator for the Resource Centers. “The greatest obstacle our clients have to accessing food support is reliable, affordable transportation. We all see how expensive it is to fill up our gas tanks. Low-income families don’t always have enough money in their bank account to go to the grocery store, much less to drive across the county to visit a food shelf. So, we are taking food support on the road to those in need, one neighborhood at a time.”
The first mobile food distribution site is in Apple Valley on Monday’s starting September 10 th at the Restoration Covenant Ministry Center. Volunteers from Restoration Covenant Church are trained to provide client resource and referral, as well as assist families while they shop inside the Mobile Pantry.
“At the Eagan & Lakeville Resource Centers, we believe our clients deserve access to fresh, wholesome foods,” said Lisa Horn, Executive Director. “Mobile Pantry clients will be able to choose from a wide array of fresh vegetables, fruits, breads, meats, and milk and dairy products, in addition to non-perishables. The Mobile Pantry— just like our pantry sites in Eagan and Lakeville—offers 70 percent of the food choices as fresh and perishable.”
The launch of Mobile Pantry has been a community effort—United Way, Schmitty and Sons bus company, Midwest Sign and Screen, the Grafix Shoppe, and Ben Younan have all helped to start Mobile Pantry while Superior Service Center has donated regular vehicle maintenance.
The Eagan & Lakeville Resource Centers is a nonprofit organization committed to serving those in need and to eliminating hunger in Dakota County, serving over 1,000 families each month. Forty-nine percent of people served are children.
To make an appointment at the Mobile Pantry, call 651-686-0787. To get involved with volunteering with the Mobile Pantry, please call 651-688-3189. To learn more about the Eagan & Lakeville Resource Centers go to www.eaganrc.org