The Los Medanos College Food Pantry will host an interactive demonstration where students fortunate enough to reserve a spot will cook alongside a chef from the Contra Costa Health Services.
The ingredients used will be from the menu that the Food Pantry provides for students who are eligible to receive the items after filling out the intake form found in room SS3-817. The demonstration will be held Oct. 30 at noon in room L-109 and those who reserved a spot will be able to participate.
Students cooking with the chef do not require any culinary experience in order to participate. Oct. 16 was the last day to sign on the RSVP sheet to cook in the demonstration. LMC’s Student Life Coordinator John Nguyen briefly described how the chef will curate and prepare the dishes for the first time on campus.
“What she will be doing is cooking stuff in front of our students, she’ll have the same food items as well,” Nguyen continued. “So when she’s making it the students are also making it and they will be able to take the food home as well.”
LMC officially established their Food Pantry service in March 2016 not long after the Hope Survey was conducted district and nationwide. In 2016, 36 percent of college students did not get enough to eat. According to Contra Costa District research, roughly 54.4 percent of community college students have reported they experienced food insecurity 30 days prior to the survey.
LMC President Bob Kratochvil openly stated how colleges within the state plan to remedy this widespread issue.
“We have participated in a survey that drew our attention to it, some of which we have known that anecdotally,” said Kratochvil.
Community colleges and state universities have developed nutrition assistance programs that are not to be confused with welfare programs. LMC’s Food Pantry has partnered with the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano to ensure that detrimental shortages do not occur. To learn more about accessing Calfresh/Food Stamp benefits visit http://www.cdss.ca.gov/food-nutrition/calfresh.
The Food Pantry at LMC operates from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Monday through Thursday and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday. To access the Food Pantry, students are required to have an LMC ID and be currently enrolled in classes. Student Jaime Orozco elaborated on the process of becoming eligible to receive food items.
“You would have to sign up on the food intake form and it has to be renewed every semester,” said Orozco.
For more information about qualifications and the menu options for the food pantry visit www.losmedanos.edu/foodpantry.