The Cat’s Cupboard Food Pantry, located on the fifth floor of Baker Center, will be remodeled in May to resemble a market and give those use it more dignity.
“We are changing the flooring to be wood-like, with matching built-in shelves to store food. We are (also) adding signage and an electronic display board to display relevant information,” Kathy Fahl, assistant dean of students, said.
“We want (the food pantry) to be seen like the counseling center or the fitness facilities on campus,” Fahl said.
In addition to canned goods, the food pantry will offer goods from the Atrium Café and the Ohio University Student Farm.
“(Kathy) can give me an idea of what foods are most likely to be used in the pantry so we can grow what is in demand,” Arthur Trese, associate professor of environmental and plant biology, said.
The Ohio University Student Farm is interested in providing produce for the food pantry if there are funds. They will likely start providing produce to the pantry in the Fall Semester because it is hard to harvest during the spring months. The trickiest part of the partnership is obtaining funds.
“Administrators of the food pantry asked the university for money to purchase fruits and vegetables from the farm, but the proposal was not funded,” Trese said.
Businesses within Athens have agreed to collect donations for the food pantry.
“We recently started to collect donations for the Ohio University food pantry Monday through Friday in a donation jar.” Charlie Fulks, manager of Court Street Coffee, said.
In the past, Court Street Coffee, 67 S Court St, has collected donations for the Southeast Ohio Food Bank and other organizations.
“The Cat’s Cupboard will allocate the funds (Court Street Coffee) gives them to purchase vegetables from local farmers and the student gardens on West State Street,” Fulks said.