(Canton, Ohio) – Stark County Hunger Task Force (SCHTF) officials are dedicated to fighting hunger in Stark County.
With the onset of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Ohio and the recently extended closure of all Ohio schools, the organization has adjusted our drive-thru pantry hours and have extended our Backpack for Kids program.
- Due to the increased demand for emergency food, the emergency pantry will now operate as a drive-thru pantry. Clients will not need to pick up a ticket to go through our pantry. Effective Monday, April 6th the drive-thru pantry will operate Monday-Friday from 10am-2pm. This is a temporary change from our normal hours. Food will be distributed in the McKinley Ave. the parking lot of the Ken Weber Community Campus. Officials ask that clients not begin lining up until 9:30am as to not block the parking lot for clients receiving other services on the campus. Volunteers will be stationed outside to direct the clients in their vehicles. Officials note they will serve as many clients as possible during this time frame. Clients may visit the emergency pantry twice a month through the end of April.
- The organization noted an increased need for volunteers during this transition. If you are interested in volunteering for our drive-thru pantry, contact Operations Manager, Steve Smith as firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 330-455-6667. Volunteer shifts are available Monday-Friday from 9am-11:30am or 11:30am-2:30pm. A sign-up link will be available on our Facebook page and or website at starkhunger.org.
- The agency is aware of the extra financial burden that families will be facing with the recent school extended closures. Local school districts are doing an amazing job providing food services Monday-Friday. The Backpack for Kids program helps fill the gap during the weekend, officials added. Backpacks are grocery bags full of ready-made food; two breakfasts, two lunches, 2 snacks, juice, and fresh fruit. Through the month of April, officials will be distributing bags to Stark County children in need. The dates for the Backpack for Kids distribution are April 3rd, April 10th, April 17th, April 24th, and May 1st. There will be ample signage directing you to the appropriate entrance. Children do not need to be present to receive food. Clients must present a photo ID. The Backpack for Kids Program will be running through the same line as the pantry. Clients may get their Backpack bags and their pantry visit in on the same day if they so choose. If you have any questions about our Backpack for Kids program, contact Assistant Director, Stephanie Sweany at email@example.com.
- Clients for both programs will need to meet income guidelines that are set by the USDA. Clients do not need to provide proof of income.
- Officials recommend clients follow our social media and website as starkhunger.org as we make updates to service.