Beaver Food Pantry continues its work remotely

The Beaver Food Pantry is still serving their students via its Instagram account and newsletter

Pictured+here+is+Muhammad+Alam%2C+kinesiology+major%2C+as+he+helps+unpack+food+at+American+River+College+food+pantry+on+March+13%2C+2020%2C+just+days+before+the+campus+shutdown.+Since+then%2C+the+Beaver+Food+Pantry+has+continued+to+work+remotely.+%28Photo+by+Emily+Mello%29

Pictured here is Muhammad Alam, kinesiology major, as he helps unpack food at American River College food pantry on March 13, 2020, just days before the campus shutdown. Since then, the Beaver Food Pantry has continued to work remotely. (Photo by Emily Mello)

Thomas Cathey, Managing & Feature Editor

Although the American River College’s campus is currently closed, the college’s Beaver Food Pantry is still doing its part in serving those who rely on its resources. 

Currently unable to provide their regular services at ARC, the organization has been using its Instagram account and weekly newsletter to alert  followers to local food pantries that are still open. The pantry’s Student Support Specialists Ana Radu and Martin Tellez have adapted to the current circumstances by continuing their work remotely in order to help students in need.

The Beaver Food Pantry remains active on Instagram, posting multiple times a week. 

“Instagram plays a significant role in sharing information we find about resources for students. Instagram has allowed us to stay connected with students in this difficult time and we want to reach a higher number of students through it, because it is the fastest way to get the most current updates,” Radu and Tellez wrote in a collaborative email to the Current.

When ARC’s campus closed down on March 18 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Radu, Tellez and the rest of the Beaver Food Pantry staff were worried that they wouldn’t be able to properly support students if they were not allowed on campus. However, the team quickly figured out a solution.

“When we initially heard about the campus closing, I believe the team was concerned about how we continue to serve our students and particularly students who experience food insecurity,” the email said. “Since we (students and staff) are not allowed to be on campus, we decided to focus our efforts on finding resources in the community that can support students during this time.”

According to Radu and Tellez, the food pantry staff also created a Google Doc form in which students could leave their contact information so that the pantry can contact them to see how they’re doing. From this, the organization began sending out weekly newsletters, alerting students to resources in the Sacramento area.

“The Beaver Food Pantry Newsletter is the major tool we use to reach a higher volume of students and it is sent out every week. The Newsletter has a lot of information and updates about many important resources that students could benefit from,” the email continued. “It includes information about where to find food pantries and hot meals, low or no-cost medical clinics, mental health resources such as hotlines and virtual counseling, current job listings, wifi [and] internet information, and other beneficial resources.”

Students can get added to the email list by emailing [email protected], and they can get updates on various food pantries, hot meals, shelters, etc. by visiting the Beaver Food  Pantry’s Instagram page: @beaverfoodpantry.