Rotary Club, various partners restock local food pantries
by Megan Jones, Editor-in-Chief
“I had a woman with me a few weeks ago, and I asked if she liked soup. She asked me ‘Is it food?’ I said ‘Of course…’ and she said ‘Then it’s not a question of whether I like it or not. It’s that I need it,” Jim Bradley, community service coordinator for the Wheeling Food Pantry, said.
Open for just about one year and three months, the Wheeling Food Pantry has handed out more than 23,000 pounds of food to people in need. Over 530 families are signed up to receive food, and 1,531 individuals have come to the pantry.
The Wheeling Food Pantry is run by donations and volunteers. They receive money through a grant fund by the Wheeling Rotary Club and discounted food through the Greater Chicago Food Depository agency.
The food pantry is open from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 1 to 4 p.m. on Friday.
“With the opening of the pantry, the need for food rose quickly. We have now stabilized our numbers, but more good is given out every week,” Bradley said.
Families can come into the pantry once a month and get a bag full of nonperishable food items to last them four or five days.
Other volunteers that help out at the pantry include WHS, OMNI Youth Services, St. Joseph the Worker Church and Wheeling Township Elementary District 21.