Lorain County Community College has several programs that are set up to help students in need. The Commodore Cupboard is one such program that ensures that students in need of assistance regarding the ability to afford food for themselves.
“The mission of the Commodore Cupboard is to ensure that students who may be struggling with food insecurity have access to healthy meals. What we know from research is that it is very challenging for hungry students to do well in class, said Kei Graves, a student success coach and adjunct faculty on campus. “We want to ensure that none of our students are going hungry and that we are providing them with the ability to have food access. The pantry also serves a purpose as an opportunity for service learning through classes on campus and volunteer opportunities for students, faculty, and staff,” Graves explained.
Students are encouraged to get themselves involved with the pantry, which is operated by student-staff.
“We are definitely looking to have volunteers come and assist, whether that is taking a shift at the Cupboard, helping organize the donations and sort through them, or helping to organize a food drive on campus,” said Graves.
The Commodore Cupboard is open the first, and third Mondays of each month from 4-6 p.m., the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month from 4-6 p.m., the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month from 1-3 p.m., and the first and third Thursdays of each month from 3-5 p.m.
“The food that we receive is donated from people on and off campus, Graves said. “More recently, Staff Council hosted an event that resulted in several boxes of donated food and personal care items. We have had other campus entities, like Student Life, Women’s and Men’s Link, and Divisions sponsor a drive or bring in donations. We also have some available funds to purchase food or personal care items when we are running low and do not have donations available,” said Graves
Commodore Cupboard has guidelines on the type of donations that are able to receive. Non-damaged containers and non-perishable items are all they can currently accept. Anything that requires refrigeration and expired canned goods are not acceptable. If an item does not meet the criteria, it is not made available to students.
“Students can utilize the Cupboard once per week when we are open, they just need to bring a student ID to the Cupboard and fill out the First-Time Applicant form. Once they do that, they can just show their ID when they come to the Cupboard to receive food,” said Graves.
If students have any questions about the Cupboard, they are encouraged to contact the pantry at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: 440-366-4103.