After the abrupt switch to online education back in March, many services at Queens College were forced to shut down operations, leaving many students in stressful situations. Homelessness, mental health issues and unemployment rates all skyrocketed as many struggled to find answers to their biggest challenges. However, after months of uncertainty, some parts of QC are resuming once more. The Rosenthal Library and the Knights Table Food Pantry are starting to become available again, offering accessible resources to students in need.
According to a press release written by Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Jennifer Jarvis, “ … with the support of the Student Association [and] the Health Services Center … Queens College will hold [its] first “Turning the Table on Hunger,” a food distribution program to feed Queens College and CUNY students.” Jarvis reports that there will be three locations throughout the Queens borough — Flushing, Corona and Jamaica — where the food pantry will ship out food, medical supplies and flu shots. The College is also offering free transportation via shuttle buses.
The “Turning the Table on Hunger” event will take place every Tuesday in December, beginning on the 8th. All those in attendance will be required to RSVP in advance and must adhere to COVID-19 restrictions by wearing a mask and social distancing at all times. As of yet, the exact times and locations have not been announced.
The Knights Table Food Pantry was generously aided by a grant that came from the Carrol and Milton Petrie Foundation. According to its website, www.petrie.org, the foundation is a nonprofit organization, founded in 2004, that “ … seeks to expand opportunities for individuals and families from low-income and marginalized communities by providing technical and financial support to innovative nonprofit organizations and colleges in New York City.”
Thanks to the large sum of the grant, the food pantry is now able to provide $25 grocery gift cards to all CUNY students in dire situations. The cards will be mailed to currently enrolled CUNY students who have completed the google application, which you can access here. It is imperative to note that only one CUNY student per household may apply to the program. The gift cards are only distributed to the individual once per academic year, and the system is based upon availability.
QC Academic Senate Chair and associate professor of library studies, Simone Yearwood, noted, “We sometimes forget the struggles of those less fortunate than us, especially during this pandemic,” she said. “The food pantry will benefit the QC and CUNY Community by reducing food insecurity. It is important that we provide a means to assist those who need it most, especially those in the QC Family.”
According to the official website, https://knightstablefoodpantry.org/, the new hours of operation are Monday – Thursday, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m., by appointment only. Prior to visitation, all students are asked to fill out a form available here; no answer will affect eligibility. To schedule a visitation appointment, click here. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.