The Patchwork Central Food Pantry reopened a few weeks ago. We heard that access to food was a concern in our community, and we decided that reopening the pantry was something we could do.
For now, the Patchwork Food Pantry is open on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 am-Noon, and we have rearranged our usual system. Our building is still closed to the public, so our clients wait outside for their food. Before they arrive, clients can call the Food Pantry Consortium Call Center (812-401-0606) to check their eligibility. If they are eligible, the Call Center can issue the referral immediately and will call Patchwork to let us know that the client is on their way. Of course, we are happy to assist if someone simply comes to Patchwork without calling ahead. If someone is looking for fresh produce, bread, or pet food, they simply need to stop by and ask—no referral needed.
We want to be thoughtful about how we operate. We don’t want to risk the health of our staff, volunteers, or clients. By staying outside, our clients can distance themselves from one another while they wait for their food. Our staffing inside Patchwork is limited so we can all spread apart within the building. We are wearing masks and sanitizing. Some of our most dedicated volunteers are not here so they can stay at home where it is safer for them to be.
Some days have been busy and others less so. Most of the people who have gotten food are regular guests from before the pandemic. It has been good to connect with them and to know that they are OK. It feels a little less lonely for us and, I hope, for them, too.
Some people have asked how they can help. For now, we are well stocked with food and we don’t anticipate any interruption in our supply. We can, however, use a few non-food items:
- Hand sanitizer
- Reusable, handmade masks to give to our clients. People have been very glad to get the few we had.
- Financial contributions to help cover the cost of operating the Food Pantry