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In 2018, we committed to removing barriers to food access for our students by setting a goal of having a school-based food pantry at each of our schools. In partnership with Rush University Medical center and funding through A Better Chicago, we launched our pilot pantry in KIPP Academy Chicago (Austin) middle school, May through June of 2022.
During that time of operation, we determined service efficiencies, logistics and delivery, best practices for communication, and the types of foods families desired. Our results were consistent. We served 100 households for four weeks. The food options included fresh fruits and produce frozen proteins and shelf-stable items. Each family received enough food to support their households for approximately 1.5 weeks (for a family of four). In cases where more than four individuals were in a home, we provided two boxes and two bags of food.
Beginning October 24th, we will reopen our pantry doors and offer quality foods and consistent services for our families. We are also planning a fun-filled ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the establishment of the school-based food pantry.
Keeping in our commitment to school-based food access for our students and families, we are collaborating with Rush University Medical Center, Orr High School and KIPP One campuses to establish a school-based pantry. The pantry will be an extension of our blossoming and robust relationship with Rush. The opening date is to be determined. We are thrilled to have food access for three of our eight campuses and are continuing to make strides toward 100% of our campuses having onsite access to quality food. Great things to come.