University launches Student Food Pantry to support students in need

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Students gathered in front of Student Food Pantry
Student Money Coaches

As food prices continue to rise students have been feeling the cost of living crisis more than ever. Clodagh Dunne, Project Officer, said: “The Food Pantry was set up in direct response to the cost of living crisis to support students experiencing food poverty. Funded by the University, students can access 15 grocery/household items for a £5 weekly membership. This is vital in alleviating stress for students during the current climate."

The Pantry offers a range of products, from personal hygiene and cleaning products to food cupboard staples. Over the coming months, the Pantry will be partnering with the Facilities, Residential and Commercial Services at the University to provide free period products and hopes to work with food outlets on campus to collect surplus food to reduce waste by redistributing it to students. The Food Pantry has proven to be a lifeline for students and is becoming a community hub, whereby students can have a cuppa and a chat whilst they visit.  Soon the Pantry will be providing healthy budget cooking demos, savvy spending workshops and Money Coaches will provide peer to peer support, giving advice on basic budgeting and tips to spend wisely. 

Yasmin, who works as a Money Coach said: “To be involved in this initiative means a lot to me. Offering a warm and welcoming environment to students in financial difficulties and seeing the relief on people’s faces is incredibly rewarding. It's clear to see it eases a financial burden. I'm excited to be here as it expands and moves towards more of a community hub.” 

The University is currently funding the purchasing of products, however with over 1000 applications for the Hardship Fund this academic year alone, and with food poverty rising, the need for further funding and support is urgent.

Having opened in February, the Pantry currently supports between 60 and 70 students, and as the initiative has grown, the Pantry has been able to tailor the items to students’ needs and stock a wider variety of products.

With exam season approaching, students should not have to worry about when their next meal will be at such an important stage in their university journey.

One student shared their experience of using the Pantry, and how it has transformed their life: “The Food Pantry is amazing. It is excellent that this resource is available to students in need, especially at this time. It brought tears to my eyes at what I was able to bring home the first time. It is a lifeline and more than just a food pantry. It is a welcoming, supportive place to visit each week too.”

With food prices continuing to increase, more and more students are facing food poverty. We need to support as many as we can, as quickly as possible. And we cannot do it without your help. If you would like to find out how you can support students in need, please visit our Student Fund webpage.

If you would like to find out more information on how Liverpool is supporting its students please see here, or to keep up to date with the Pantry's progress follow the team on Instagram: @livunimoneycoaches