Caritas Food Pantry continues to serve rural Mason County.

March 21, 2022

Kelly Glover has been involved with Caritas Food Pantry for 10 years.

Caritas Food Pantry continues to serve rural Mason County.

Around the County is a presentation of Preferred Credit Union, www.preferredcu.org, located locally at 266 N. Jebavy Dr., Ludington.

By Rob Alway, Editor-in-Chief.

CUSTER — Caritas Food Pantry, located at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 85 S. Madison St. has been serving Mason County and surrounding areas since 2006. The pantry is open Monday and Wednesday from noon to 2 p.m. except during holidays and inclement weather. 

There is no cost for the pantry’s services nor is there a membership. Director Kelly Glover said eligible households that fall below poverty level may use the pantry’s services once per calendar month. Participants typically receive essential food items including meat, eggs, fruits and vegetables as well as many staple food items. Glover said Caritas only closed for a month during the COVID-19 pandemic to allow the volunteers to deep clean the facility. However, since that time, there has been a nearly 50% decline in the number of people who use the pantry’s services. 

“We used to serve about 120 families each month. Now, we serve about 60,” Glover said. “We aren’t exactly sure why there has been a decline in participants, especially with the drastic increase cost of living expenses. Our clients mostly live in rural areas and we know many are aging.” 

Caritas opened in 2006 at St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Scottville. When that parish closed, the service was moved to St. Mary’s, in the former school building adjacent to the church. It receives grants from Meijer and donations from Feeding America and Indian Summer Co-Op of Ludington. It also receives local food and monetary donations. 

Caritas not only relies on donations but it also relies on volunteers to operate. Currently, over 40 volunteers help each month. Anyone with questions about receiving food, donating or volunteering may call 231-301-0626. 

 

 

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