“Stock the Pantry” Challenge is in full-swing


Victoria Nord and Kolyn Payne

Payne said Victoria Nord helped her with the majority of the flyer that was released to the student body. “I just added the fork and the hammer,” she laughed.

On Wednesday, Oct. 6, students received an email that served to encourage students to volunteer in the first annual Food Bank Sculpture Contest called “Stock the Pantry” through Nov. 3.

The idea came from Academic Credit Evaluator and Records Processor Tammy Titlow, and Assistant Registrar Carrie Pratt. Simons said they had suggested a food drive in the style of a challenge posed to each department. Simons thought it may be a good idea to have the challenge be a competition involving sculptures.

“I lived in Dallas for a while and in the North Park Mall each Thanksgiving, they do sculptures of all food and there’s some really amazing sculptures, so I thought well maybe you can do that and have different student organizations build a sculpture in the ballroom and get students to vote on the best one,” Simons said.

Titlow and Pratt are hoping for there to be a huge turnout for the challenge. “I think there’s a huge need for us to be able to stock the pantry,” Titlow said.

“If we can stock the TxWes food pantry and we have an excess, then we can roll that over into the Tarrant County Food Bank so we can meet the needs of our students and then hopefully the community,” Titlow said.

Pratt, who is new to Texas Wesleyan, said that she had previously done similar events for other organizations she’s been a part of. She said the one thing she didn’t expect to find in a food drive was hygiene products.

“When I think of ‘food pantry’ I actually am not thinking about hygiene products. I’m thinking about canned foods. So, when Sonia [student volunteer at the pantry] brought up that hygiene items were also a necessity, if you will, it just made a good reminder for me, like, ‘yeah, they need that too,’” Pratt said.

Sonia Diaz is a senior EC-6 bilingual education major who is constantly volunteering in the food pantry on campus. She said she has a lot of optimism for the event, especially with the fact that it’s going to have a creative aspect and that it’s a challenge among students, faculty and staff.

“There’s definitely a lot of need. We hardly ever get donations and because we’re a non-profit, we don’t have any income. Most of [the food] comes in randomly, either by a volunteer or donor. Kollyn and I bring some stuff in sometimes and by the end of week, it’s gone,” she said.

Kollyn Payne is a senior sociology major who also works as often as she can in the food pantry. Payne has access to the social media posting that the pantry has done to advertise about the “Stock the Pantry” event.

“We’ve been getting a lot of interaction on our Instagram; it seems people are excited about it. We found out a few people have already signed up so hopefully more people decide to RSVP by October 22nd which is the deadline,” Payne said.

Payne said Victoria Nord helped her with the majority of the flyer that was released to the student body. “I just added the fork and the hammer,” she laughed.

With more in-person classes happening, more people have stopped by the food pantry to get food or snacks on their way to class.