Mobile food pantry in Plymouth Wednesday

PLYMOUTH — As part of an effort to make sure their six-county area is covered, staff of the Food Bank of Northern Indiana recently began offering a mobile food pantry — bringing food to those that need it, right where they are.
“This is a new program for us in 2012,” said Amanda Peterson, resource opportunity developer for the Food Bank of Northern Indiana. “We are trying to reach out to each county first, then individual cities. We are planning to do a mobile pantry in Marshall County once a month.”
The first Marshall County mobile pantry will be held at Church of the Heartland in Plymouth from 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday. Peterson said that she is looking at additional Marshall County locations for future mobile stops, but added, “We will see how this one goes first. This might be the ideal location for Marshall County.” The first two mobile pantries Peterson and her staff offered this year, in Elkhart and Kosciusko counties, drew 250 and 120 people, respectively. Peterson said that she expects to serve about 200 people in Plymouth Wednesday.
Items available Wednesday include fresh perishable items such as produce, grains, dairy, and protein, and non-perishable dry goods.
“We have a lot of good stuff,” said Peterson. “We get a lot of perishable items, and we like to bring those to the mobile pantries. We usually bring the stuff that we need to use right away.”
To receive food, individuals need to bring their own boxes or bags, and be ready to show a photo ID. Proof of need or a home address is not required. Staff and volunteers will be on hand to assist with loading food into vehicles.
A mobile pantry for Starke County is planned for April 19, at First Pentecostal Church, 509 S. Roosevelt Road in Knox.
“We want to make sure every county gets what they need,” said Peterson. “We see the need, and we want to serve it.”
The Food Bank of Northern Indiana services Elkhart, Kosciusko, St. Joseph, Marshall, Starke, and LaPorte counties. With questions about the mobile pantry, call 574-232-9986.
Church of the Heartland is located at 705 E. Jefferson Street in Plymouth.