Food insecurity is an issue nationwide and it is increasingly becoming a problem on college campuses. That’s why one major grocery chain is stepping up and making a major donation to Connecticut’s 17 state colleges and universities.
Stop and Shop is donating $100,000 so many state schools can stock the campus food pantry shelves.
“We want to make sure students don’t need to worry about where their next meal is coming from,” said Stop and Shop spokesperson Maura O’Brien.
A ribbon cutting and check presentation took place at Central Connecticut State University today. On campus, students are just finishing up the school year.
From appearance, there was hardly a sign of food insecurity, but it is something students we spoke with say exists, as hidden as it may be.
“Some students feel embarrassed by it. So, you won’t necessarily see it. But that doesn’t mean it’s not happening,” said CCSU senior Sean Oushana.
According to a recent survey at Connecticut’s state colleges and universities, 53% of students who responded said they worry about whether their food would run out before they got money to buy more. 20% said they’ve skipped eating for entire days because of insufficient funds.
CCSU President Zulma Toro said she just recently received the results of the food insecurity survey and finds the results concerning.
“People may think that if someone is attending college, they don’t face food insecurity. That is incorrect,” Toro said.
Olanrewaju Olamuyiwa is Central Connecticut State University’s student government president and has tried to help students in need.
“I started telling a lot of my friends that there’s actually a food pantry on campus where you can get food,” he explained.
Maria’s Pantry is run by student Radena Hastings. She explains that some students need this resource more than others.
“Some of the students that are coming in here, they’re also looking for stuff to bring back to their families,” she said, explaining that some are balancing being a student and head of household.
The $100,000 grant to Connecticut schools is just part of the $1.5 million Stop and Shop will be providing to colleges in the five states where they have stores.
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