Shepherdstown, W.Va – The Ram Pantry is a service for the community, made possible by the community. Founded in 2019, student organizers and the Office of Student Affairs worked together to alleviate the concerns of the community.
With the mission to provide resources to members of the community the pantry stocked up on food, hygienic products, and school supplies for free.
This is made possible by community donations, pack-the-pantry events, and student volunteers. With a high price tag of $9,000 to $11,000 annually to run the pantry, all of these play a crucial role in stocking the pantry.
Unfortunately, many aren’t even aware that the Ram Pantry exists. The lack of attention and traffic has caused a surplus, which has led to the postponement of their upcoming donation drive.
Despite being open, available, and fully stocked, why aren’t they seeing many students? The answer of course, is covid.
After opening in 2019, they would shut down a year later to comply with covid restrictions. They remained closed when school re-opened, but would eventually re-open for online orders.
The switch to online was complicated, requiring students to fill out a form and list items they wanted from a catalog. However, the catalog wasn’t always up-to-date, and the virtual back and forth strained the limited workers.
After regaining in-person operations, they were surprised to find out very few people were showing. Veronica McDade, Graduate Assistant for Multicultural and Accessibility Services, who helps run the Ram Pantry said, “Most of the people coming in are regulars who show up every week.”
McDade attributes this to students believing you must be of a certain economic status, going on to say, “The pantry was made to alleviate the concerns of students who had to choose between eating or getting gas… we want everybody to know, the Ram Pantry is open for everybody, no matter their background, income, or job status.”
The Ram Pantry is open on Mondays and Thursdays, in Boteler Hall.
If you want to volunteer to keep the Ram Pantry open email Danielle Stephenson (DSTEPHEN@shepherd.edu).