What food pantries really need

Lots of people rely on food pantries for their next meal, but when it’s mostly peanut butter and canned corn, it’s not gonna keep someone’s family fed. 

Think about what you buy at the grocery store. Is it 20 cans of beans or is it things like bread and meat and cheese? 

Remember a lot of the people getting these donations for dinner are little kids. They need their bodies well-nourished for school and play, so thinking of these children when donating is very important, and with that knowledge, this is what you should be giving:

  • Healthy cereals and oatmeal
  • Bags of potatoes or apples
  • Kids’ snack items (juice boxes, individual applesauce, etc.)
  • Sweets like cakes and cookies
  • Toilet paper
  • Diapers and wipes
  • Jars and pouches of baby food
  • Personal hygiene products, like sanitary pads
  • Toiletries like toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, lip balm
  • Dry pasta
  • Jars of pasta sauce
  • Canned fish and meat (salmon, tuna, ham, turkey—pop-top cans are best)
  • Canned vegetables and fruit
  • Milk (fresh, canned, or powdered)
  • Peanut butter
  • Canned beans
  • Sliced bread
  • Canned and dry soups
  • Baking mixes that require only water
  • Spices
  • Pet food (dry, wet, treats)

These places are not there so you can empty your pantry of things you don’t want. They are there for parents living paycheck to paycheck in an unforgiving economy. They are there for the homeless people who have no other means of getting their next meal. They are there for college students whose funds are all going into getting an education. 

These people are not lesser or bad because they have trouble feeding themselves and their families. 

And remember, you can donate all of these things to food pantries because they have freezers and refrigerators and shelves. They deserve good or even high-quality groceries just like people who have that income do. 

We are in a pandemic still and people are suffering, so please go donate something that will make someone’s day.

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