St. Joseph Food Pantry honored

St. Joseph Pantry Press Release
St. Joseph Food Pantry's Jan Martin and Kayla Honnon received the DAR chapter award from Bunnie Bowen.

The St. Joseph Food Pantry has been awarded a DAR Community Service award by the local Courtney-Spalding Chapter.

The pantry, located in the former Kennedy Middle School, 215 W. 13th, is open from 9 a.m. to noon, on the first and third Saturday of the month. Renee Michaud has been the pantry coordinator since it opened in 2001.

Much of the food comes from the Kansas Food Bank, some is donated and collected through service projects spearheaded by area groups. Other items are purchased with monetary donations.

As coordinator, Michaud prepares the Food Bank orders and coordinates the volunteers which includes students, 4-H groups and scout troops, as well as church volunteers. Volunteers conduct food drives and help on distribution days.

Usually there’s a way people can volunteer, and some are families of all ages, Michaud said.

Families can come to the pantry once a month, and don’t have to be affiliated with the Church.

“If you have a need, you can come,” she said. They are asked to give their name, address, number in family and their ages.

One box is allowed for every four people. Boxes include nonperishable items, frozen meat and bakery items. Groups also donate produce items based on the growing season.

“I’m proud of the (Hays) community for the many ways there are to help those in need,” Michaud said.

The award was presented by Bunnie Bowen, who nominated the Pantry for the Award, to father and daughter volunteers Jan Martin and Kayla Honnon.

A Community Service Award is given to an individual or group who has contributed to their community in an outstanding voluntary, heroic, civil or benevolent manner, or who has participated in or organized community activities.

The Courtney-Spalding Chapter serves Ellis County in North Central Kansas, including Hays and other towns of Northwest Kansas.

The DAR, founded in 1890, is a volunteer women's service organization dedicated to keeping America strong by promoting patriotism, preserving history and supporting education programs.

Courtney-Spalding Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution was organized in April 1926 with headquarters in Russell. Members were from Russell, Ellis, Ellsworth, and Trego Counties.