When families and individuals visit the Fritz Food Pantry at the Goodman Community Center, they walk away with bags filled with food, household items and hygiene products – an average of about 100 pounds of products. That’s incredible. The other thing that’s incredible: This year, the pantry has made that happen with an average budget of just $3 per household per visit. Three. Dollars.
Why so low? One reason is food pantries are really good at stretching their dollar, leveraging partnerships with places like Second Harvest and local businesses. Another reason – this year in particular – is that the demand on the pantry has been beyond anything Goodman has ever seen.
“It feels like we’re breaking records every day,” said Francesca Frisque, Fritz Food Pantry Manager. “More and more people are finding their dollar just doesn’t stretch the way it used to, and with the emergency allotments from SNAP ending, I expect to see those numbers soar even higher.”
“More and more people are finding their dollar just doesn’t stretch the way it used to, and with the emergency allotments from SNAP ending, I expect to see those numbers soar even higher.”
SNAP is the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and the emergency allotments introduced in 2020 are set to expire in Wisconsin later this month. Many families will likely see a dramatic drop in the monthly assistance they were receiving (check out this great article by the Cap Times for more info). That means the $3 per household Francesca has to purchase items that aren’t donated to the pantry is likely to get even smaller as the year progresses.
So what can the pantry do?
Francesca says the pantry can’t operate without donations of food, household items and hygiene products.
“The food pantry gets A LOT of in-kind donations, and they’re a vital part of the infrastructure of the pantry,” she said. “Without our community partners and individuals in the neighborhood, our customers wouldn’t be leaving with the items they need each week.”
Francesca is worried about meeting the need of our community, but she has confidence she and the team at Goodman will find a way. “We have to. Our community is relying on us.”
How can you help?
The community plays a vital role in ensuring our pantry shelves stay stocked, and donations of goods were down in 2022. Here are a few ways you can help out right now:
- Consider hosting a food drive at your workplace, club or place of worship. Download our food drive kit.
- Drop off food or household/hygiene products. Check out our most up-to-date shopping list.
- Order a few things off our Amazon wish list.
- Subscribe to Goodman's email newsletter, or follow us on Facebook or Instagram to stay current on our pantry needs.
Together, we can ensure our whole community has what they need to be successful, because when every neighbor is taken care of, we’re all better off.
One more thing that's pretty cool
The Fritz Food Pantry is open three days a week.
- Tuesday 9:30am – noon, drive-thru 1-2pm
- Wednesday 6pm – 8pm
- Thursday 12:30pm – 3pm
The doors will open 30 minutes prior to shopping. Customers are strongly discouraged from arriving earlier than that. To ensure you have sufficient time to shop please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to our closing time.
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Read about what the Fritz Food Pantry at the Goodman Community Center needs right now!