Food insecurity is a community concern in Beaver Dam and to address it, community partners have come together to find an innovative solution in the form of a mobile food pantry.
The Beaver Dam Mobile Food Pantry and collaborators are making a difference and that includes Marshfield Medical Center-Beaver Dam which supports the project.
The Mobile Food Pantry began serving families in 2009 to provide immediate food assistance. Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin is a major partner and Trinity United Methodist of Beaver Dam coordinates and manages the pantry. About 50 volunteers set up the pantry one Saturday a month and food distribution is first-come first-served There are no eligibility requirements.
The pantry has come a long way during these years. In 2018, an effort to find a new home for the pantry began. A search committee met at Beaver Dam’s Blue Zones Project Dodge County office to brainstorm options.
Blue Zones Project is a community-led well-being initiative designed to make healthy choices easier through improvements to a city’s environment, policies and social networks. Blue Zones Project is sponsored by Marshfield Medical Center-Beaver Dam in collaboration with Sharecare®, Inc., and Blue Zones, LLC. Dodge County is the first Blue Zones Project demonstration site in the state.
Among relocation priorities was a temperature-controlled facility. Moraine Park Technical College stepped up and now hosts the pantry at a climate-controlled site, making it a better community experience for families to have a safe and warm place to get the food they need.