Avila Now

May 23, 2022

Fighting Food Insecurity by Helping The Dear Neighbor

Feed Your Friends Infographic
Feed Your Friends.

“38% of students at two-year colleges experienced food insecurity in fall 2020, along with 29% of students at four-year colleges. The number is much higher among students of color, according to The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice’s #RealCollegeSurvey published in March 2021.

The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic – furloughs, pay cuts, and layoffs – as well as recent high inflation rates have made food insecurity worse over the past few years, advocates say (Wood, 2022).”

In the spirit of “Helping with the Dear Neighbor,” the Feed Your Friends pantry fights food insecurity among members of the Avila community by providing free food and supplemental resources to all current Avila students, staff, and faculty members.

“Food insecurity is defined as a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life. There may be enough for today, but there is uncertainty if there is enough food for tomorrow. This can be a temporary situation for a household, or it can last a long time,” (Harvesters, 2022). 

“In addition to college students, food insecurity sometimes affects others within the campus community, including faculty members and staff. For instance, 26% of adjunct faculty reported having trouble accessing adequate food or having to reduce the amount of food they ate, according to a 2020 American Federation of Teachers report (Wood, 2022).”

Avila’s food pantry works with community partners, like Harvesters, to provide fresh food products, including dairy, bread, and fresh produce. They also get very generous donations, food and monetary, from the Avila community.

“In Kansas and Missouri, there are hungry people living in sparsely-populated rural counties, suburban communities, and urban centers. Before the COVID-19 pandemic began, food insecurity was at the lowest point seen since before the Great Recession of 2008. The pandemic increased food insecurity significantly in 2020, and the numbers still remain at high levels,” according to Harvesters. In Harvesters’ 26-county service area, one in eight people is at risk of hunger, and one in six children is at risk. This service area overlaps with the Avila community. 

Avila’s pantry has breakfast, lunch, and dinner items, snacks, and a small supply of allergen-free items for those who are gluten or dairy-free. Baby items, such as diapers, wipes, baby formula, and pet food or pet care items may also be available. The pantry also has personal care items like body wash, lotion, toothbrushes and toothpaste, and feminine hygiene products. Avila’s food pantry manifests the University’s values supporting food pantry customers’ worth, dignity, and potential. 

Avila’s food pantry is open year-round thanks to Campus Safety which helps open the pantry even when staffing is limited. The pantry is open during the summer, with the same operating hours as spring 2022*. In an effort to reduce food waste, dairy products may be limited in the summer. 

Regular Hours of Operation*
Monday-Thursday: 12-6 p.m.
Friday: 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Weekends: By appointment via email

High-need food and personal care items will be available at all times on the shelves located in the hallway next to Feed Your Friends. 

Dallavis Hall Rm. 812B
11901 Wornall Road
Kansas City, MO 64146

Follow Avila’s food pantry on social media for updates on hours and availability. 

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