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The 12th Can takes action to fight hunger

Published: Thursday, February 6, 2014

Updated: Thursday, February 6, 2014 00:02

Texas Aggies Making Changes is hoping to expand its 12th Can Food Pantry to ensure fellow Aggies don’t have to worry about going hungry.

With the shelves stocked with an unprecedented 2,500 pounds of food for Wednesday and Thursday’s opening, Whitney Pearson, TAMC facilities chair, said the week is another step forward for the pantry.

“In our most recent opening in the beginning of January over the holiday break, we served 24,” Pearson said. “As people’s knowledge of the pantry grows, so does
the need.”

First suggested by former Student Body President John Claybrook during the 2012-2013 school year, the 12th Can came to fruition with its first opening November.

The food pantry is open once a month, but Phuong Trinh, finance chair of TAMC and senior finance major, said she would like to see the pantry open more often in the future.

“My goal for the organization is to expand the pantry,” Trinh said. “We served 34 people in November. We can serve more people. I’d like to have
more openings.”

In order to receive food, people come into the pantry, request a food basket and sign off. Trinh said the food pantry is another food option for struggling members in College Station and the pantry’s location is more convenient for students.

“With the 12th Can Food Pantry, people do not have to go all the way to the Brazos Valley food pantry,” Trinh said. “They can come to food pantry,” Trinh said. “They can come to the on-campus one.”

Senior finance major Andrew Miesch, who volunteered at the pantry Wednesday, said the bulk of the food for the 12th Can is donated by local supermarkets to the Brazos Valley Food Bank with a small portion coming from private sources like Aggies Can, the Student Affairs Can Drive and the Aggie Moms Club. Miesch said the pantry supports both students and faculty and that as people learn about the 12th Can, the demand for food will grow.

“As more people learn that we’re here and that we can help bridge the gap, I definitely expect to see more people served.” Miesch said.

Kaitlin Raley, operations and logistics chair of TAMC and senior agribusiness major, said of the approximated 2,500 pounds of food stocked at the pantry, almost 500 pounds of it came through private donations.

Although the donations are helpful, Trinh said TAMC still requires
additional funding.

“One obstacle is funding food right now,” Trinh said. “We don’t have a lot of donors. We did receive a budget from the Office of the Student Body President, but we have needed to use member dues to buy food.”

The food pantry will be open the first Wednesday and Thursday of every month. Those interested in getting involved with TAMC or the 12th Can are encouraged to donate food, money and time as they can.

Trinh said the pantry welcomes all those in need, following the ideal of selfless service that A&M embodies.

“My message to students is that we are all the 12th Man,” she said. “We stand and support each other. If any student has a problem with budget and can’t get food, we are here to help.”

In addition to Wednesday’s opening, the food pantry will be open from
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday. 

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