First federal aid food pantry

By Maddy Maurer
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Hi Otters! My name is Maddy Maurer and I am your Associated Students (AS) Basic Needs Senator. AS is your student government at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB). We host events, offer services to students and advocate for student interests on committees across campus. Since 2016, our organization has partnered with the Food Bank for Monterey County to host the AS Food Pantry. We have expanded and adapted the pantry each year to try to better address food insecurity on campus.

A recent adaptation is our transition to a market style pantry. Students can now choose what food items they’d like to take, instead of our original style, where each student received a pre-packed bag of food. Our next act will be hosting our first ever TEFAP AS Food Pantry on Wednesday, Oct. 10 at 12:30 p.m. in the Student Center West Lounge.

The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) is a federal program that provides food at no cost. The United States Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service oversees this program, which provides food and administrative funds to the California Department of Social Services and the CalFresh Bureau.

Our TEFAP AS Food Pantry will provide students with some staple food items that are not typically available at all other AS Food Pantries. Items may include, but are not limited to: rice, beans, pasta, tomato sauce, peanut butter, tuna, apple sauce, fresh produce and bread.

Just like at any other AS Food Pantry, students will need to bring their Otter ID to swipe in. However, at this event, students will also need to complete a form on-site with their signature, address, zip code and the number of people in their household. They will also have to check “yes” or “no” to the question, “Is this your first time receiving USDA food this month in this county?”

For questions or disability accommodations, please contact Maddy Maurer at basicneeds@ascsumb.org. For Food Pantry dates, times and locations, please visit csumb.edu/as/food-pantry. For additional basic needs resources, please visit csumb.edu/basicneeds.

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