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Food Pantry for Veterans Opens at Bath VA


A food pantry that will provide free food to all veterans is officially open at the Bath VA Medical Center.

Food insecurity in America is quite common, especially in the rural Veteran population. According to Feeding America, 1 in 9 working-age Veterans are food insecure, and 24% of active-duty service members were food insecure in 2020.

The concept and dream of a Veteran food pantry began in 2017. VA Finger Lakes Nutrition and Food Service team identified 234 food insecure Veterans in 2023. Seeing an increase in prevalence, the Nutrition and Food service teamed up with the Corning Food Pantry to learn best practices, gain knowledge, and ultimately work together to battle the pandemic of food insecurity.

The Food Bank of the Southern Tier has been monumental in the efforts of the VA Finger Lakes Veteran Food Pantry, donating over 25,000 pounds of food. Through the food bank, Corning Food Pantry, community donations, and employee donations, the VA Food Pantry became a reality and officially cut its orange ribbon this morning, symbolizing efforts to end Veteran hunger.

The opening of the VA Bath food pantry is only the beginning of the program. A mobile pantry is in the works to serve Veterans in the Canandaigua and Rochester communities. The food pantry provides free food to all Veterans and is open on the first and third Friday of each month, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. On its opening day, VA’s Food Pantry served over 150 Veterans.

To donate to our food pantry, donations can be made through the food bank of the Southern Tier, or the VA’s Center for Development and Civic Engagement (CDCE), being earmarked for the VA food pantry program.

To make donations to the Bath VA’s CDCE, contact Mary Harkin, CDCE Specialist at (607) 664-4771 or [email protected]

photo: provided
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