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Food Pantry Serves Those in Need

Tracy Kummer Community Services Director
Article Date: 
19 November, 2010 - 06:03

 “I have the best job in the world,” exclaimed Tracy Kummer, Morgan Community Services Director who oversees the Morgan Food Pantry.  She explains that “service is the best thing in the world and I’m grateful to the county for this opportunity.”
When coming to meet with Tracy first time, one may be nervous or hesitant about being there.
She puts you to ease and find yourself on a first name basis by the time you are walking through the process.  Tracy states “I work hard to make the people I help feel comfortable.”
The food pantry is just one of the areas that Tracy strives to help the community. She also helps individuals sign-up for HEAT (Home Energy Assistance Target) which has the same eligibility requirements as the food pantry.
Morgan Community Services is located in the basement of the Morgan City Offices building and the hours are Tuesdays 8:30 am to 10 am & 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., as well as Thursdays 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m..  The current services provided are: food assistance, HEAT assistance, Sub for Santa, holiday food boxes and other assistance as needed.
Sub for Santa is a rewarding experience for those wanting to give service as well as those needing the help.   Right now we are taking applications for Sub for Santa.  To sign up, please come to the Food Pantry on the listed hours.  If you would like to be a host family or to donate items for Sub for Santa, please contact Tracy Kummer at (801) 829-8533.
 Tracy credits the residents of Morgan County for generously donating food to the food pantry.  Food is donated  from local residents, local food drives, Jubilee, Walmart, Utah Food Bank, and Bountiful Baskets. Morgan is fortunate to now have monthly food drops from the Utah Food Bank,” said Kummer.  The October’s food bank drop served 36 families in the community.
“A large portion of the pantry’s donations, Tracy states, “is from the food drives. Our main one is the Boys Scout’s ‘scouting for food’ drive, this one brought in just over 11,000 lbs, the postal carriers ‘stamp-out hunger’ drive was a good drive that brought in almost 4,000 lbs, and  ‘The Relay for Life’ food drive brought in 125 lbs.”
 Some of the wards from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in Morgan County, organized and held their own food drive activities in the months of September and October, with a combined total collected of 4,000 lbs of food.
 The food collected from the community food drives stays in Morgan County and is distributed to Morgan county residents. “Without donations there would not be a pantry,” explained Kummer.
   When the food pantry was first organized, it was located on shelves on the back wall of the of the county courthouse auditorium.  Former Food Pantry Director, Diana Olsen explains that when she took over the duties of the Food Pantry Director in July 2006, the Food Pantry became a little more organized with a closet being dedicated to the storage of food pantry items.  She gives credit to the two employees before her that were responsible for taking in private donations of food and funds for Community Services.  
By December 2006 Morgan Community Services became a Utah Food Bank Agency and began to place and accept food from the Utah Food Bank to serve the families of Morgan County.  This resulted in a need for a large freezer to accommodate frozen meat as part of the food donations.  RC Willey generously donated a large freezer to the County for this purpose.  
By January 2007 twenty two agencies were being utilized to meet the needs of families in Morgan County, whether it be a need for food, medication, finding medical insurance, legal help, housing assistance, clothing assistance, Sub for Santa, Thanksgiving and Christmas food boxes, HEAT assistance, or emergency financial assistance.   
 In January 2007 the Food Pantry moved to the Morgan City Building basement where there was more room to store and organize the food.  There was a need for more shelves, and shelves were purchased from a trust account and assembled by Jackson Lake as an Eagle Project.  ” Photos in the pantry tell some of the story, showing Jackson and his father assembling the shelves and then with the help of his scout troop putting the thousands of pounds of food on those assembled shelves”.
“There have been many families and individuals that have donated their time and efforts to the success of this food pantry and Morgan Community Services with food donations, financial donations and helping in the food pantry sorting food and expiration dates,” says Diana Olsen.
  This help has continued, states Tracy, “that most Tuesday evenings there are young men & young women from around the county that come give service at the food pantry. They sort and straighten the food, stock the shelves, and strive to keep expiration dates current.
“We are currently serving on the average  18 families per month. The need is out there for donations, so we can continue to help serve our community.”
The eligibility requirements for Morgan Community Services follow the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines 2009/2010 which is as follows:
Family size of 1 and monthly income $1,354
Family size of 2 and monthly income $1,822
Family size of 3 and monthly income $2,289
Family of 4 and monthly income $2,757
Family of 5 and monthly income $3,223
Family of 6 and monthly income $3,692
Family of 7 and monthly income $4,159
Family of 8 and monthly income $4,626
Morgan County residents should be commended for their love and generosity towards residents that are needing assistance.  For more information call Tracy Kummer 801-829-8533