Pratt County Food Bank continues to serve those in need locally

Maggie Haas
Pratt Tribune
Lyle Taylor (from left), Susan Pixler and Diana Harris organize food donations for distribution to those needing help in Pratt County at the Pratt County Food Bank.

The Pratt County Food Bank has served the Pratt community for over 21 years. With the COVID-19 pandemic still raging, the Food Bank faces many new challenges as volunteers continue to serve those in need.

“The Food Bank has taken all measures possible to protect the clients and the volunteers”, said Janice Brehm, a 10-year veteran volunteer.

Volunteers can no longer socialize and get to know clients and their situations. In fact, there is very little interaction between clients and volunteers. Clients still get their box of food, but they have to pick it up at a scheduled time at which time it is placed outside on a cart. The carts must be sanitized between each and every client, and of course, masks are required.

The Food Bank serves families from one to many. Seniors, disabled individuals, low income, unemployed, and single-parent households all can benefit from the Pratt County Food Bank. Families are authorized to receive five boxes per year, but because of Covid additional boxes are allowed.

COVID-19 has also affected the means of gathering food donations. For example, Pratt High School’s War on 54 food drive had too many risks. Instead, the Pratt High Student Council created the Drive to Thrive, which challenges businesses to compete against each other in gathering food items. Instead of going door to door, Pratt businesses provide containers to gather food as you visit their location. The containers were collected by members of the student council every Friday until October 9th and counted. That project was recently wrapped up with donations totalling more than 5,000 food items.

The Food Bank, which is open Mondays from 7-9 p.m., Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Thursdays from 7-8 p.m., and Fridays from 10 a.m. till noon, can be attended by anyone. Special appointments may also be made by calling 620-672-5150.

The Pratt County Food Bank was closed December 28 to January 3,  but reopened on Monday, January 4. During that time it was professionally cleaned and restocked for the 2021 year.

Those who would like food assistance must follow the following protocols:

1. Please wear a mask and social distance.

2. You need ID and proof of residence for Pratt County.

3. Fill out the 2021 form on the clipboard on the cart.  PRINT

(You may sit in your vehicle to do this. Keep the pen.)

4. Give the clipboard to the volunteer and show ID/Proof.

5. Volunteers will deliver the food boxes outside the FB doors.

6. Take the food and return cart to door.

No clients are allowed inside the food bank.