Human Services to close food pantry

Human Services Inc. in Jackson County plans to end its community food pantry service in 2017.

The last day the pantry at 1115 E. Oak St., Seymour, will be open for clients to receive food is Jan. 25, according to a news release from the agency.

Jill Hammer, executive director of Human Services, said the expense of running the pantry is what led to the decision to close it.

“It’s very expensive to run, and we don’t get support dollars from any special grants or anything like that,” she said.

The pantry relies on volunteers to help stock and distribute food and receives commodities from Gleaners Food Bank in Indianapolis and donations from the public. It currently is open once a week from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesdays.

But like any pantry, sometimes donations are up, and sometimes they are down, Hammer said.

With other food pantries available in the county, including Anchor House and Community Provisions, Hammer said Human Services’ pantry was duplicating services.

“There are a number of other pantries and churches that offer pantries in the area,” she said. “We don’t feel like it will hurt the community.”

Human Services is serving about 145 households a month through its pantry, but many of those families also receive food from Anchor House and Community Provisions, Hammer said.

The agency is notifying clients of the closure by handing out fliers with information for other pantries and hot meal sites in the county, Hammer said.

Read the full story in Thursday’s Tribune and online at tribtown.com.

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January Rutherford is a reporter for The (Seymour) Tribune. She can be reached at jrutherford@tribtown.com or 812-523-7069.