Together, the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE) and the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation donated $3,400 to the Patrick & Henry Community College Foundation to support the college’s hunger relief efforts.
P&HCC will use the funds to ensure the food pantry on campus is stocked full of non-perishable grocery items and essential hygiene and household products.
Across America, food insecurity has always been a concern especially for nontraditional college students who are working and raising families while also attending classes. However, in 2020, the pandemic exacerbated those needs. According to the research and advocacy arm of Chegg.org, approximately a quarter of the students polled expressed concerns about food insecurity and nearly a third reported that hunger had impacted their ability to study.
Every semester since P&HCC started the food pantry in 2017, staff members have worked hard to keep the pantry stocked for the many students who need it. This semester, the pantry has already served more than 100 different students. For so many, the pantry is a critical resource to help them feed themselves and their families. To keep the pantry stocked, the college mainly relies on donations from donors like VFCCE and other community and campus partners.
With the funds from VFCCE and Anthem, the college intends to purchase nonperishable food items to stock the pantry shelves as well as campus meals and grocery gift cards as needed.