St. Francis Food Pantry Bringing Healthy Options For Low-income Families

Access to healthy and affordable foods for low-income families can be challenging in Northern Michigan.

However – St. Francis food pantry in Traverse City is working to help individuals and families live healthier lifestyles.

We have quite a variety of stuff

With the typical canned goods – plus the foods that are actually good for health.

“We have lots of vegetables fruits as we love getting our fresh stuff too cuz that’s really a big thing having our fruits vegetables people love it,” said Rosie Duell, the director of the pantry.

Stephen Greenshields has been coming once per month for four years.

Picking the produce …

“Meat and vegetables,” he said.

Instead of the pastries.

“Mostly full of sugar and fruit would be a more natural food better for you,” Greenshields said.

The produce is brought to food pantries like St. Francis by food rescue.

It’s a company traveling to local grocery stores picking up produce and protein they might not keep on the shelf too much longer.

Once it’s brought to the pantry – people coming for food can tailor their needs in this book recording everything from how many members they’re shopping for – and what kinds of food they prefer.

“Well the vegetables are sometimes good to have,” he said. “Don’t have a lot of money to get that kind of stuff and the meat is welcome cuz we don’t have a lot of money for that.”

“A lot of time it’s hard for people this stuff isn’t cheap to go to the grocery stores and buy,” Duell said.

St. Francis helps people like Stephen, and encourages anyone to come in for a healthy helping hand.

“It is exciting especially the people that have ya know families,” she said. “We had a father with four young boys ya know and his will eat you out of got house and he was just so excited when he left here he just makes or day to know we’ve really helped them out.”

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