Q: What is the purpose of the Food Pantry at Iowa:
A: The purpose of the Food Pantry at Iowa is first and foremost to ensure that the basic needs of the Hawkeye Community are met. The specific purpose of the Food Pantry at Iowa, though, is to provide grocery items to those who are encountering financial difficulties, emergency food shortages, or other issues that would prevent one from being able to purchase, or have access to, enough food every week. We are intended to only be supplementary – we are not a grocery store! If someone is finding that our service alone is not able to meets their needs, and their households needs, they can ask someone from the Food Pantry at Iowa team about the other resources (affiliated and non-affiliated) in the area that might be able to help!
Q: Where is the Food Pantry Located?
A: In room 278 in the Iowa Memorial Union (IMU). The IMU’s address is 125 N Madison Street, Iowa City, IA 52240. Room 278 is located on the second floor of the IMU near the communications office. There is signage throughout the IMU and if you cannot find it, you can ask someone at the IMU’s service desk for help! Here is also a map of where it is located:
Q: What are the Food Pantry’s hours?
A: Hours will change from semester to semester because we are primarily run by students, whose schedules change from semester to semester. Each semester’s hours will be posted by the first day of each semester on the Food Pantry’s main website page.
Q: Who can use the Food Pantry?
A: Any student, faculty, and staff of the University of Iowa who has a HawkID number and/or card.
Q: Why can’t people outside of the university use this resource?
A: Because we have limited funding that is designated for those who are within the University of Iowa. We struggle to meet the demand we already have, so opening it up to people outside the scope of the University of Iowa would not work or be sustainable.
Q: Why do you have limits on items?
A: We have limits on items because we have limited funding, like mentioned in the last Q. Each year we are allotted a specific amount by the University of Iowa Student Government (both undergraduate and graduate) and we must make that lump sum last for the entire fiscal year. This means we have a weekly budget, and we cannot go over that amount each week, or else we would not be able to be open for the entirety of the year. If we could allow everyone to get all they needed without limits, we would. But because of the limited funding, we have a limited amount to spend on goods, which means we must ration it to last all week and all clients. We are constantly advocating for more funds so we can better serve you all. We are also constantly working with partners in the area to create more food drives, and to get more donations, to serve you all better as well.
Q: Isn’t your pantry supposed to supply all my grocery needs?
A: No, we are not. More so, we cannot. We are supposed to be supplementary, meaning we are only here to provide some of what you need. As stated in the previous question, we do not have enough funding to provide everything for everyone. If our pantry is not providing enough for a client and their household, there are other non-affiliated resources in the community that the Food Pantry at Iowa team can provide clients information on!
Q: How can I help support the Food Pantry at Iowa?
A: Thank you for asking! You can help by emailing the Food Pantry’s email (firstname.lastname@example.org) a couple of weeks before each semester to sign up to volunteer with us, weekly, for that entire coming term! If that does not work for you, you can also go to our website and go to the “Donate” tab to find that you can support us by purchasing the items needed that are on our Amazon Wishlist, or you can donate monetarily by clicking on “Donate Online” under the “Make a monetary gift to the pantry” section on the same donation page. If neither of those seem right, you can also email us about setting us a food drive!
Q: How can I give constructive feedback to the Pantry?
A: Great question! We love getting feedback from all of those we serve. We do, however, only respond to, and discuss as a team, respectful and constructive feedback. Offensive language and blatantly rude feedback will not be tolerated or brought to FP team discussions. If you have ideas on how to improve the pantry, please submit your feedback on this google form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf4dLFY_3kJHXuwFIvrzzFb4aCwtr-9TeS_Bg8VwM4NtRYPvg/viewform . We really appreciate it!
Q: Where does the Food Pantry get its grocery items from?
A: The Food Pantry at Iowa sources their goods from a multitude of places: a food bank called HACAP, a local food bank called Table to Table, Grow Johnson County, food pantry purchases from Walmart, Amazon Wishlist donations, Food drives, donations of eggs from Hen House, and food pantry purchases from Martin Bros, amongst other sources.