Free food for Otters

Basic Needs partnered with Associated Students at California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) to give away bags of free groceries during the Pop-Up Pantry to Otters on Oct. 19. Students had to register and pre-select groceries, along with a pick-up time slot for the day prior to the event. 

Basic Needs Coordinator Ashley Ramsden noted 242 students registered for the Pop-Up Pantry, with more than 200 bags picked up day of and the rest awaiting Otters for a later day.

“Dried mangoes were surprisingly popular!” Ramsden said. “Other top-requested items were sourdough bread, tomato basil garlic pasta sauce and white rice.” 

Student turnout for the event was lively and filled with energy. Due to the preselected time slots, the crowd throughout the day was smaller and evenly distributed. 

Fourth-year Paloma Ronquillo commented on the Pop-Up Pantry. 

“Getting groceries helps me out,” Ronquillo said. “I can save some money, and that’s what I’m most excited about.”

Basic Needs is hosting many fun-filled activities in the upcoming weeks. Basic Needs is joining the Otter Cross Cultural Center (OC3) to co-sponsor a “Monday Money Moves” financial literacy workshop on Oct. 25 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Cooking with CSUMB will be held on Nov. 4 from 3 to 4 p.m.

Lastly, a meal swipe donation drive will be held Nov. 15 to 19, in recognition of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, which will provide students with an opportunity to give back to their fellow Otters.

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