COVID-19 (coronavirus) Update:
While we are not accepting food donations until the pandemic is over, we want to make sure our Clients are able to receive Pantry items safely. Clients, please be advised of the following pick-up schedule…
You can visit the Pantry once a month. You can also request referrals to our support pantries.
You must be a client of North Kent Connect to visit the Pantry. For more information on becoming a client, please visit our Qualify for Services page.
HEALTHY FOOD POLICY
When you walk into The Market Pantry, you won’t see shelves of macaroni and cheese, Pop-Tarts, Fruit Loops, and Ramen noodles. Instead you’ll see a counter of fresh produce and shelves of whole grain pasta, dried beans, and low-sugar cereals.
North Kent Connect made this institutional change for our families because we care about their well-being. We heard from clients that they appreciated pantries with fresh food, lean proteins, and dairy. We knew from experience that these types of items flew off the shelves. We learned from research that low-income families tend to experience more health issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease. With this in mind, we made the switch from a traditional food pantry to The Market Pantry – a food pantry that offers healthy food to families who need it the most.
Help us provide these nutritious foods for our clients. We’re looking for fresh produce, lean proteins, dairy products, whole grains, and low-sugar cereals.
FIGHTING FOOD INSECURITY
Food Insecurity refers to the USDA’s measure of lack of access to enough food for a healthy lifestyle for a family.
These families may not be food insecure all the time, but they often lack nutritious food and instead turn to inexpensive, sugary and calorie-dense food. Often, these families need to make a trade-off between basic needs such as housing or medical bills, and purchasing nutritionally adequate food.
In Kent County, nearly 15% of households are food insecure. To combat these statistics, NKC provides an array of food programs.
North Kent Connect has five satellite support pantries located in northern Kent County, which are often more accessible to our clients.
If you are a current client and would like a referral during business hours, simply call our main line and ask for a food referral. After hours, call (616) 866-3478 ext. 343 and leave a message, including your full name and phone number.
For more information on the pantries, including locations and hours available, refer to our Support Pantry page.
The Commodity Supplemental Food Programs (CSFP) is a federally-funded program which works to improve the health of low-income pregnant and breastfeeding women, new mothers up to one year postpartum, infants, children up to age six, and elderly people at least 60 years of age by supplementing their diets with nutritious USDA foods.
To see if you qualify, refer to the CSFP Income Guidelines or speak to one of our Intake Specialists. Review our Schedule of Services for the next commodities distribution.
The Market Pantry is supported in part by Heart of West Michigan United Way.
NKC Support Pantries