The Brazos Valley Food Bank’s School-Based Food Pantry program addresses the issue of adolescent hunger by partnering with local schools to host food pantries on the school campus that distribute food and hygiene items. While the Children’s BackPack Program most frequently focuses on elementary aged students and each BackPack serves just one child, School-Based Food Pantries predominantly serve intermediate, middle and high schools and are able to serve the students' whole family, as needed.
School-Based Food Pantries make food more readily accessible for low-income students and their families since they are already regularly at the school. Students and their families can access a variety and quantity of food that can serve the whole family, in a way that accommodates an older student's reluctance to be singled-out or somehow identified as “in need” amongst their peers. School-Based Food Pantries also try to be preventative – some youth feel obligated to help the family, and this offers them a safe and confidential way to do this, without skipping school or dropping out altogether to get a job.
Participating schools store food and hygiene items so students and their families are able to visit the school pantry and receive these items as needed throughout the school year.
From July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022 the Brazos Valley Food Bank provided 5,942 individuals with 19,309 pounds of nutritious food through onsite, discreet School Pantries at 11 partner sites.
Ways To Get Involved
For teachers and school staff that are interested in becoming a School-Based Food Pantry Partner Site, click the link to learn more and apply.