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Food pantry to provide Thanksgiving meals to campus community

2020-11-16-FoodPantry1
Domini'que Allen, assistant director of the Gainesville food pantry, reviews the donations received at the food pantry on UNG's Gainesville Campus. For the third time, the Gainesville Campus food pantry will provide a turkey and sides for those from any UNG campus who sign up for the annual giveaway. Registration is open through Nov. 24. To receive a meal, email dominique.allen@ung.edu.

University of North Georgia (UNG) students, faculty and staff in need of a Thanksgiving meal this month will have the chance to receive a box filled with the holiday fixings from the school's food pantry.

For the third time, the food pantry on UNG's Gainesville Campus will provide a turkey and sides for those from any UNG campus who sign up for the annual giveaway. The Thanksgiving boxes will be distributed from Nov. 19-24. To receive a meal, email dominique.allen@ung.edu. Registration is open through Nov. 24.

"We've seen a surge in people who use the pantry," said Domini'que Allen, assistant director of the Gainesville food pantry. "So we know we needed to provide a Thanksgiving meal to those who come to us seeking assistance."

A new element to this year's giveaway is curbside service. Allen explained the pantry began curbside pickup when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

"From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., I was filling orders every hour or every half-hour and sending it to people waiting outside," said Allen, who plans to carry out that endeavor for Thanksgiving.

For regular and Thanksgiving curbside service, pantry clients fill out a form with their name, the number of people in the household and their demographic information. Allen said all of their information is kept confidential.

Patrons select a day and time to pick up the food. Once they are on campus, they reply to an email to notify the pantry of their arrival. A staff member or volunteer brings the food to the front or back of the Student Center.

"On the form, we ask them to fill out the items they need," Allen said, explaining the food pantry has shelf-stable goods as well as cold and frozen products. "Our freezer is full of frozen turkeys now in preparation for Thanksgiving."

While the Thanksgiving boxes will be distributed until Tuesday, Nov. 24, the pantry will be open on Wednesday, Nov. 25. The food pantries on UNG's four other campuses will be accessible to students the day before Thanksgiving. All pantries will be closed Nov. 26-27 for the Thanksgiving holiday.

The pantries on all five campuses will reopen Monday, Nov. 23, and close Friday, Dec. 18, for winter break.

Recently, the food pantry on UNG's Dahlonega Campus received an influx of food from the Interfraternity Council. More than 4,000 items were donated, said Sherry Parker, manager of the Dahlonega food pantry.

"We are well stocked for students who need to take extra to get through the holidays," she said.

Food pantry hours and contact information:

Blue Ridge

  • 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday
  • Student Success Center
  • Contact: anna.speessen@ung.edu

Cumming

  • By appointment only
  • Student Resource Center
  • Contact: nikki.mcNeill@ung.edu

Dahlonega

  • 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday
  • Vickery House, across the street from Price Memorial
  • Contact: sherry.parker@ung.edu

Gainesville

  • 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays; 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays; and 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays
  • Student Center
  • Contact: carly.redding@ung.edu or dominique.allen@ung.edu

Oconee

  • 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesdays
  • Bishop Wellness and Activities Hall
  • Contact: NigelsNest@ung.edu or text 678-780-9509

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