Food Pantry

FOOD PANTRY OPERATIONS ARE MODIFIED FOR THE SAFETY OF CLIENTS AND STAFF.

Please click here for the most current Food Pantry policies. 

The information below is presented for reference purposes.

Getting food is easy.

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The Jonnycake Center of Westerly is proud to offer a client-choice service model for its Food Pantry. Clients have the option to come to our Pantry and select food for themselves (with the assistance of a Pantry volunteer), or clients can let Pantry volunteers do the shopping for them, if preferred! Clients are welcome to take advantage of this service on a monthly basis.

*Note that because of service changes made in accordance with public health guidelines under the COVID-19 threat, our Food Pantry is temporarily operating on a modified service model. Clients are not allowed in the Pantry, and Jonnycake staff are filling all orders for clients. We look forward to re-implementing client-choice as soon as possible.

Qualified residents of the towns of Westerly, Charlestown, Hopkinton, and Richmond, Rhode Island may receive a one week supply of food for each member of the household every thirty days.  Food baskets contain enough food for 21 meals per person – three meals per day for seven days.  Food items include milk, eggs, cheese, meat, bread, assorted produce, and a variety of non-perishable groceries.

General Information
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HOW TO GET FOOD

 

When can I get food?

Mondays 12 – 3
Tuesdays 9 – 12
Wednesdays 9 – 12
Thursdays 9 – 12 & 3 – 6
Fridays 9 – 12

 

How do I get food?

 

1.  Begin by contacting our Social Services Department and signing up as a client for our Food Pantry.

 

2.  Once every thirty days, you are welcome to come to the rear of our building at 23 Industrial Drive in Westerly and visit our Food Pantry via the loading dock. Please follow all posted signage for where to go, and our staff will be happy to assist once you arrive.

 

3. You are encouraged to shop for yourself under the guidelines from our Food Pantry staff, or you can let the staff and volunteers do your shopping for you. We value your privacy and will never address you by name, unless specifically requested.

 

How long does it take to fill the order?

 

It normally takes about twenty minutes. More clients need food assistance in the second half of the month, so you may wait a little longer after the 15th.  Food requests are processed in the order in which they are received.  We ask that you obtain your food order prior to shopping in the store, and we request that you do not smoke in the back of the building out of respect for other clients, staff, and volunteers.

 

 

What if I run out of food before thirty days have gone by?

 

You can visit the Social Services Department and request an emergency food basket which will give you enough food for a few days. They will also refer you to other local food pantries which you may use.

 

 

I am diabetic and on heart medicine. Is there food available for me?

 

Yes.  Just complete the top section of the Food Request Form to indicate you are diabetic and on heart medicine and we will select the best healthy food choices for you that we have available in our pantry.  Please also indicate if you have any food allergies.

 

 

Where does the food come from?

 

The Jonnycake Center of Westerly is a member agency of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank where we purchase a majority of the food we provide (more than 2 tons of food per month). We also partner with Rhody Fresh Milk and local grocery stores to supply fresh milk, meat, and other essentials. Additionally, many in our community generously donate food, either individually or through local food drives.

SPECIAL FOOD PROGRAMS
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SNAP

The Rhode Island Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is available to eligible individuals and families in need of  food assistance. Call our Social Services Department at 401-377-8069 ext 101 to learn how to apply.

 

Power Pack Program

During the school year, nutritious weekend “Power Pack” grocery bags are packed with weekend meals and supplies for all school-aged children within a family.  We provide breakfast, lunch, and snacks to help bridge the gaps on weekends for children who depend on school access to receive meals.

 

The Power Pack program was started in February 2016 as a pilot program in one elementary school, serving six families and less than 20 children.  By the end of the 2016-2017 school year, the weekend Power Pack program served 40 families with 115 children across 3 local elementary schools. The program has grown significantly in the years since. Inquire today to learn more!

 

SPLASH Program

The Summer Program Looking to Alleviate Student Hunger (SPLASH) runs during the summer months and over school vacations in order to ensure that students who receive free or reduced breakfast and lunch at school do not miss those meals when they are home.

 

Eligible families living in Westerly, Hopkinton, Charlestown or Richmond are encouraged to sign up through the Jonnycake Center of Westerly’s Social Services department.  Groceries are available for pick-up the week prior to vacations, or weekly in July/August 2021.

 

Financial Assistance for Holiday Dinners

New and returning clients are invited to participate in our holiday-time Adopt-a-Family program, which provides financial assistance for neighbors to purchase holiday meals and gifts for children. If you or your family could benefit, please register by October 25, 2021. Email [email protected], call (401) 377-8069 and select Option 1, or visit our Social Services office during its operating hours. Distribution takes place in mid-November.

 

Pet Food

We know that your pet is a member of your family too. Therefore, we have dog and cat food available in our Pantry. All of our pet food is donated from the generosity of the community and subject to availability.

 

Community Garden in Charlestown, RI

In 2020, the Jonnycake Center of Westerly began managing a Community Garden located in Charlestown, RI, with the goal of strengthening community food security. The Community Garden is a volunteer-based garden that sustainably grows fresh produce for the Jonnycake Center of Westerly’s own Food Pantry, with surplus produce donated to pantries of peer agencies. We are proud to offer fresh, free, locally-grown produce for our clients, as well as provide volunteering opportunities in the garden for people of all ages and abilities. Clients can also receive vegetable plants with instructions for planting, cultivating, and harvesting so that they can take an active part in feeding their families. We believe that all people, regardless of economic circumstances, should have access to fresh, safe, affordable, and nutritious foods at all times.

 

Weekly Farmer’s Market 

During the summer season, the Jonnycake Center of Westerly operates a free community Farmer’s Market for neighbors in need. Fresh produce, including locally-grown fruits and vegetables, are offered at no cost. Service providers from peer social service agencies are usually available as additional community resources. Join us every Wednesday morning during the summer harvest season if you could benefit from free produce! Service begins at 9am every Wednesday (rain or shine) and lasts until supplies are gone, approximately 11am or 12pm.

DONATE FOOD

Support #NeighborsInNeed with a donation to our Food Pantry!

 

Non-perishables are accepted Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays between 12pm and 3pm in the loading dock behind our Food Pantry (located at 23 Industrial Drive in Westerly). Look for the big blue barrels!

 

Canned soup, canned vegetables, canned fruit, and cereal are especially sought. We are grateful for any food donations you can provide!