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Illinois Ag News Headlines
SIUE's New Cougar Cupboard Offers Free Food and More
Illinois Ag Connection - 11/07/2018

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville wants its students and campus community focused on achieving educational excellence, not worrying about where or how they can access food and important hygiene products.

That's why the Kimmel Student Involvement Center has opened the doors to the University's new Cougar Cupboard food pantry in the Morris University Center.

"Food scarcity is a problem that isn't necessarily at the forefront when people think about issues surrounding college students," said Stephanie Bargiel, a Kimmel Student Involvement Center graduate assistant in charge of the Cougar Cupboard, and a biological sciences master's student. "I'm elated that SIUE administrators, faculty and staff collaborated to make this progressive initiative possible for our students."

The Cougar Cupboard is run entirely on donations, and is open to active students, faculty and staff with a valid SIUE ID on Tuesdays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Wednesdays from 3-7 p.m.

Its shelves are stocked with canned goods, pasta, rice, peanut butter and other food items, as well as hygiene care products. The Cupboard also provides information on off-campus resources such as Madison County Transit, SIUE's WE CARE Clinic, the SIU School of Dental Medicine and other local food pantries.

Cougar Cupboard patrons receive enough food for each family member residing in their household to eat for approximately three days.

"What I love about the mission of the Cougar Cupboard food pantry is its focus on enhancing students' educational experience," said Sarah Laux, PhD, associate director of the Kimmel Student Involvement Center. "If a student is hungry or their basic needs are not being met, they're not going to live up to their full potential as a student."

"By having these resources available to them at no cost, hopefully they will not have to worry about how to get their next meal," she continued. "Instead, they can focus on why they're at SIUE. They're here to develop personally and academically, and graduate and go on to achieve great things."

For more information on the Cougar Cupboard food pantry, visit siue.edu/kimmel/community/CougarCupboard.

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