Lakeview Pantry, Chicago’s Largest Food Pantry, Expands Services to Help More Low-Income Residents
Beginning Sept. 5th, Lakeview Pantry will expand its client service area and extend its operating hours to assist even more North Side residents in need.
Lakeview Pantry currently provides emergency food assistance and social service programs to low-income individuals within the boundaries of Fullerton on the south, Damen on the west, and Wilson on the North. The new boundaries will expand these services to North Avenue on the south, Western Avenue on the west, and Argyle Street on the north. In addition, food distribution and case management hours will be extended by thirty minutes at Lakeview Pantry’s Oakdale site and new evening hours added at the Sheridan site.
The Pantry’s Home Delivery Program, which provides food delivery to elderly, disabled, and homebound clients, will also increase its delivery frequency to include every Saturday during the month.
In 2016, almost 8,000 clients visited the Pantry approximately 40,000 times. With this expansion of services, the Pantry expects to see over a 30% increase in client visits.
“In the last month, more than 120 new families requested help from the Lakeview Pantry. A third of those households were located outside of our current service boundaries,” said Executive Director, Kellie O’Connell. “Expanding our client service area is the right answer to address this growing need. Almost half of our clients must choose between paying for food or paying for rent and medication. Many work full time and still cannot make ends meet because of low salaries. The need is there and Lakeview Pantry intends to meet it.”
Statistics show that 1 in 9 people on the North Side of Chicago and 1 in 7 in Cook County face food insecurity. Many households confronting hunger do not qualify for federal nutrition assistance programs. Those that do meet the requirements still need Lakeview Pantry’s programs to fill the gap that exists after Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits run out at the end of the month.
“Lakeview Pantry is unlike any other pantry in the Midwest,” said James Cappleman, Alderman of the 46th Ward. “They make it their goal to serve the whole person, not just the hunger. We are truly fortunate to have a resource like this expanding to serve the majority of the North Side.”