Food Programs

volunteers holding food

Jane B. Gearhart Full Circle Food Pantry

 

The food programs of the Center for Community Engagement and the Volunteer Action Center include the Jane B. Gearhart Full Circle Food Pantry (FCP) and Razorback Food Recovery (RFR) which work in tandem to provide food assistance on campus and beyond. FCP was founded in 2011 by a group of students who became aware of their peers’ struggles with hunger. The Pantry has grown from serving 12 people in its first month of operation to serving an average of 200 students, staff, faculty and their households each week. The Pantry benefits from generous support from clubs, departments and individuals in the campus community who donate food, time and funding to the program.

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volunteers packing meals

Razorback Food Recovery

 

The RFR program was created in 2014 by a group of students passionate about the issues of food waste and hunger in our community. According to the EPA, more food reaches landfills than any other single material and in 2012 alone, about 36 million tons of food waste was generated in the United States. Meanwhile, Feeding America estimates that in 2012, 14.7% of American households were food insecure. The need is especially prevalent in Arkansas where in 2012, 19.7% of households struggled with hunger.[1] In Washington County, where the University is located, 22.4% of the population experiences hunger[2] – the third highest percentage of all Arkansas counties. Since starting recoveries in late February, RFR captured over 17,000 pounds of excess food from campus retail locations, dining halls and special events. Together, RFR and FCP distributed this food to the campus community and to area hunger relief agencies including the Salvation Army and Lifesource International.

[1] Feeding America http://feedingamerica.org/hunger-in-america/hunger-facts/hunger-and-poverty-statistics.aspx

[2] Feed Fayetteville http://www.feedfayetteville.org/about/hunger-data/

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