THIBODAUX, La. — The Bayou Community Foundation has awarded an $8,000 grant to Nicholls State University to benefit its food insecurity programs.
Mom’s Pantry provides access to non-perishable food items for the Nicholls community. It is located behind the old continuing education building and is always open. Tillou’s Table provides hot meals on campus to students in need.
Beyond the Pantry will focus on increasing skills in food planning, preparation and small-batch cooking. Mass Communication students will video demonstrations created by dietetics and culinary students. Participating students will receive ingredients, a reusable tote bag, storage containers and recipes. Students will learn about food literacy, which helps prevent food insecurity.
“We are extremely grateful to the Bayou Community Foundation for this kind of support,” said Dr. Michele Caruso, interim vice president for student affairs and dean of students. “The resources their grant provides will directly impact our students and their future.”
USDA statistics collected in 2018 show that 16 of 100 households in Louisiana experience food insecurity. That insecurity could be a barrier to success in the classroom. For students, hunger impacts concentration, focus, depression symptoms and physical health.
“When we add COVID-19 to the situation, knowing many of our students or their family members are impacted financially due to COVID-19, we anticipate an increase in the number of students who will need Mom’s Pantry, Beyond the Pantry, and Tillou’s Table,” Caruso said.
The Bayou Community Foundation was created in 2012 by a group of business leaders and philanthropists from Lafourche and Terrebonne Parishes. It is the only community foundation specifically and solely serving Lafourche Parish, Terrebonne Parish and Grand Isle.