In September 2018 WCC Recycling and Custodial Departments, Student Activities and Support Services, and dedicated students of Phi Theta Kappa came  together to raise funds for students facing food insecurity. The success of that first semester was shared here.

The project is ongoing, and by end of Winter Semester had raised a grand total of $2648.81 to support the work of the Food Pantry.

Food insecurity amongst students has been trending upwards in recent years. Feeding America describes “Food insecurity as a household’s inability to provide enough food for every person to live an active, healthy life. Food insecurity is one way we can measure and assess the risk of hunger. In the United States currently 1 in 8 people struggle with hunger.”

Washtenaw Community College has students who sometimes face food insecurity. The Student Resource Center (SRC) at Washtenaw Community College Emergency Food Pantry was set up around 20 years ago. In the past three years alone, the food pantry has seen an increase each year in the number of students requesting assistance. In the academic year 15-16, 79 students were served, year 16-17 was 120, and year 17-18 was 155. With the need almost doubling in the last few years, it demonstrates that the issue is real. For many students, it is a temporary situation. By helping them overcome this temporary challenge, they will be able to move on, complete their program of study and reach their academic goal. The food pantry is just one way WCC can help students be more successful.

The sustained efforts of everyone involved are a true example of WCC teamwork and dedication supporting the success of WCC Students. The process starts with the custodians emptying the recycling bins, then the Recycle Department sorts and weighs the return bottles, Phi Theta Kappa collect and redeem the bottles, Student Activities keep records, coordinate the program, and pass the revenue onto the Food Pantry which purchases the goods needed to support the students.

Doing something positive for students in need via recycling (which is already a positive and beneficial activity), while working across divisions and with student groups, gives a very beneficial triple bottom line outcome which includes social, environmental and financial factors.

Students wishing to find out more about how to get started using the pantry should stop by the Student Resource Center at SC 206 or call 734-677-5105. The pantry is open Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

If you wish to donate to the Food Pantry you can do it in person at the front desk of Counseling and Career Planning SC206.

For more information about Recycling at WCC the Recycling Operations Manager can be contacted at rjandrews@wccnet.edu

More information about Phi Theta Kappa can be found at https://orgsync.com/109637/chapter or by email to ptkatwcc@gmail.com