On behalf of our entire team, we wish you – our clients, volunteers, and supporters – safety, health and peace during this trying time. During the COVID-19 crisis, we will post weekly updates about our programs and any important news we have to share. Included at the end of this post are the ways you can support the Pantry.
As the last few weeks became busier than ever, demand for food has increased more than 300% (by individuals served). Please see below for more details on our COVID-19 response by the numbers. Lakeview Pantry is committed to serving Chicagoans in need during the COVID-19 crisis. Not only are we helping the most vulnerable populations in our community, but as businesses of all kinds close their doors in response to COVID-19, many have been forced to turn to a food pantry for the first time. It will take all of us to step up, chip in, and lend a hand to weather this unprecedented emergency – together.
- On Saturday, April 18, we were honored to have the ability to open a new temporary site at the Wrigley Field Concourse in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This new satellite site will accommodate more clients while allowing our staff and volunteers the space necessary to safely distance from each other. In fact, with the addition of Wrigley Field, we were able to more than double our client capacity. Clients should plan to arrive for services at the Wintrust Right Field Gate (located at the corner of Sheffield and Addison), either on foot or by car. If arriving by car, please stay in your car as your groceries will be brought directly to you and placed in your trunk. Food distribution will take place on Tuesdays and Saturdays, 12 – 2pm.
We were also joined by Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Cubs owners, Tom and Laura Ricketts, for a tour and media briefing at the new site! Their time and support mean so much to us, in addition to the crucial extra space we needed. Learn more at lakeviewpantry.org/wrigley.
- We were thrilled to have Chicago’s media cover the grand opening of the new site! Thank you to WTTW, NBC Chicago, WGN 9, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Block Club Chicago, NBC Sports and more for helping spread the word!
- Our partnership with NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Chicago was highlighted on WGN 9! Lakeview Pantry is proud to help provide food to those NAMI Chicago is serving during this time. Watch the segment here.
- We would like to extend our sincere gratitude to the new Chicago Bears quarterback, Nick Foles, and the Foles Believe Foundation for bestowing Lakeview Pantry with one of their nationwide hunger relief grants! It’s generous partners like this that allow us to continue our critical programming for our neighbors struggling with hunger. Learn more at the Foles Believe Foundation website!
- Governor J.B. Pritzker highlighted Lakeview Pantry among several other outstanding organizations in Illinois during the April 9 COVID-19 press briefing. Click here to watch at the 14:40 mark!
- Click here to download our one sheet and learn more about our efforts to keep everyone safe during this time.
- Our Online Market pickup hours have expanded to provide even greater flexibility and choice for our clients! Pickup times are now available:
The Hub (5151 N. Ravenswood Ave.): Thursdays: 2 – 7pm, Fridays: 12 – 4pm (New!), Saturdays: 12 – 3pm
Sheridan Market (3945 N. Sheridan Rd.): Thursdays: 12:30 – 2:30pm
Specific pickup windows are selected during the registration process.
- Our Fresh Market at La Casa Norte is now open on Tuesdays from 11am – 3pm, in addition to Mondays and Wednesdays! Grocery pickup at this site follows a similar distribution model as Sheridan and Wrigley Field.
- We welcome back one of our former Social Services interns, Layne Hardy, as a temporary Pantry Coordinator! We’re so grateful for his help and generosity during this time.
- We’ve also hired temporary staff members Hannah Cousins to assist with our Online Market, and Courtney Frederick to assist with our Development team! Welcome aboard!
- April is National Volunteer Month, and last week was National Volunteer Week! We celebrate the impact of volunteer service across our community, and especially extend a heartfelt “thank you” to each and every one of our volunteers. We couldn’t do it without you, and are beyond grateful for your support during this time! A great way to show your support is to donate in the name of an important volunteer or other hero in your life. Visit lakeviewpantry.org/donate to make your gift today! Plus, watch our extra special thank you from the whole Lakeview Pantry team here.
- We are still in urgent need of volunteers! Are you healthy and bored at home? Do you want to give back to your community? Volunteering is an essential service during Illinois’ stay at home order! Tell a friend and sign up on your personal site! NOTE: In particular, we would appreciate the help of volunteers who are fluent in Spanish.
How to Support Our Work
- Donate: We have a critical and ongoing need for financial contributions to keep our neighbors healthy and fed. Every $1 provides 8 meals – click here to make a gift now!
- Volunteer: As we anticipate the need for food increasing in the coming weeks, we will need the help of healthy volunteers to help us pack groceries, sort food, and other essential tasks for our most vulnerable communities. Currently, all volunteer orientation sessions are being held virtually. New volunteers should email email@example.com to receive a video orientation link and steps to become an active Lakeview Pantry volunteer. Existing volunteers should continue to follow standard procedures to sign up for shifts.
- In-kind contributions: Donating food to help stock our shelves will be essential. Many food donations from our grocery partners have sharply declined, and our supply costs are likely to increase. Our most-needed items this week are listed below. For more information on in-kind donations, please contact Bill Thomas, Chief Operating Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Peanut butter
• Canned tuna
• Canned vegetables
• Canned fruit
• Canned beans
Thank you for your patience, understanding, and support during this time of uncertainty. Follow us on social media for the latest from Lakeview Pantry and updates from the front lines of the fight against hunger: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Take care and stay well,
The Lakeview Pantry Team