Mobile Food Pantry distributes monthly in Guttenberg at St. John's

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By Caroline Rosacker

For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in. ­—Matthew 25:35

On the third Saturday of each month throughout the year and the second Saturday during the months of November and December, a spirited group of volunteers gathers together to provide muscle and a welcoming embrace to people in our area counties. 

The Mobile Food Pantry, sponsored by the Northeast Iowa Food Bank, is a monthly service available to all citizens of Northeast Iowa. St. John’s Church has organized and provided the space for this service for the past nine years. Volunteers from the community, regardless of church affiliation, show up eager to work.   

The Mobile Food Pantry provides a variety of nutritious perishable and non-perishable food items.The church location in Guttenberg served 257 households, reaching 608 individuals this past year. 

The food is delivered from the food pantry’s location in Waterloo housed in a large refrigerated truck. The truck is unloaded, sorted and dispersed according to guidelines pre-determined by quantity and selection. The items available to the public fluctuate according to availability. 

Volunteers are on hand to help carry out each participant’s grocery items. "Twenty-five volunteers are needed for the operation to function well," states organizer Diane Schilling.

This community service program  provides a helping hand to those households that are trying to stretch an already tight food budget. “Many times, elderly individuals are faced with the choice of buying food or filling a prescription,” said Schilling.  

If you are in need of supplemental food — the doors open at 9 a.m. with food distribution beginning at 10 a.m. Please bring a photo I.D. and your own box or basket to carry food.

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