FGCU Campus Food Pantry Assists Food Insecurity after Hurricane Ian


Abigail Muth

The FGCU Campus Food Pantry helped students returning to campus after Hurricane Ian by providing a safe place to access nonperishable food.

Abigail Muth, Staff Writer

After Hurricane Ian hit, the Campus Food Pantry was open and available while many other kitchens and stores were out of power and supplies. The Campus Food Pantry is located in the Music Modular, Lot 7 and is currently welcoming any current students and faculty of FGCU with a valid Eagle ID. 

The food pantry typically sees about 100 students a week, although that number increased significantly after the storm. 

“In the weeks after the hurricane, we were very busy because students were coming back to their dorms, realizing their kitchens were cleaned out and the stores were still not stocked, so a lot of them relied on us for that. Since the stores have gone back to normal and they’ve been able to restock their kitchens, our numbers have gone back to normal,” said Campus Food Pantry Coordinator Samantha Lloyd. 

They temporarily opened up to staff and faculty after the hurricane, but they only saw a few. 

“75% of our clients live on campus. And the other 25% have their own place, still live at home or are nontraditional students that already have a family,” Lloyd said.

The food pantry allows clients to be served once a week, and has options for meals like soup, mac and cheese and canned meat. They also offer snacks and ingredients such as fresh fruit and butter. They also carry personal hygiene products sparingly. 

They accept monetary and item donations. Many organizations host food-drives and donate the food and money they raise to the pantry. Some faculty and staff even have a percentage of their paychecks go directly to the food pantry. 

“The drop sites are mostly convenient for the donors who work in those buildings and can’t come if they work while we’re open,” Lloyd said.

The FGCU Campus Food Pantry helped students returning to campus after Hurricane Ian by providing a safe place to access to food.

Working at the food pantry is Lloyd’s full-time job and she is usually there over 40 hours a week. She also has a list of certified volunteers that she can call in. This is utilized in times such as these while the food pantry is open on weekends and extended hours after Hurricane Ian. 

The food pantry has returned to normal operating hours, which is Monday through Friday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. However, the outdoor food pantry remains stocked on weekends and holidays when they aren’t open.

Confidentiality is one of the food pantry’s top priorities. They want to make sure all students feel comfortable when they come in and understand that they are loved and cared for.