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MCC food pantry helps needy students

Rochester, N.Y. - Buying food or books? Its not a choice anyone should have to make, especially a college student. But because its a struggle for many students to pay tuition and other college costs, food pantries are being opened on many college campuses around the country.

Locally - is located inside Monroe Community College.  Theres no sign on the door and many students probably dont know its there.

But the pantry has been there for 10 years. It was started by students who saw the need of others around them.

The college estimates that 20 students ask for help every semester. But they also acknowledge the need is probably much greater than that. Some students are embarrassed to ask for help or ashamed they need help.

Matt Lawson, the Assistant Director of the Office of Student Life, said he has had students tell him: Im hungry. I dont have any food.

Student mentors like Rachel Peden help identify students in need and refer them to the counseling center, where everything is handled privately.

The pantry is stocked with canned goods, pasta and other foods, as well as personal items like shampoo and soap.  It is all donated by students, staff and people in the community. They rely on donations to keep helping students in need.

If you want to help or donate, contact the Office of Student Life at Monroe Community College. The phone number is 292-2060.

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Washington Times