On Thursday, November 12, 2020 staff and management from Macy’s Department Store presented a $12,334.00 check to Bakersfield College’s Renegade Pantry. The donation will go towards filling the pantry before the holiday season.
“Macy’s has been a true friend of the Renegade Pantry for over 5 years,” said Dr. Nicky Damania, Director of Student Life for Bakersfield College. “At BC, we are focused on providing a welcoming and supportive environment that cares for students in every aspect of their academic journey. It is the kindness and generosity of community partners like Macy’s and BC alumni and current Renegades who work there, that allows us to continue providing for students in need.”
A survey conducted in 2019 of nearly 40,000 students from 57 community colleges found that a combined 52% of students said they either couldn’t afford to eat balanced meals or worries whether their food would run out before having to buy more. From those same results, 41% of respondents said they skipped meals or ate smaller portions for financial reasons and 12% had not eaten for an entire day the previous month due to not having enough money. Similarly, in the first half of 2020 at Bakersfield College, it was reported that 45% of students had some form of food insecurities who completed the Student Online Experience surveys and the COVID-19 Student Impact survey
Deena Cota, Store Manager at Macys is happy to see the funds go towards a program that is important to her and many of Macys’ employees. She says, “Many of our colleagues have attended or have children attending Bakersfield College so our team is very much a part of the Renegade family. We raise money as a team for this initiative, along with community support and together, it is our hope that this donation helps students financially so they can prioritize their school needs.”
Macy’s has donated to the Renegade pantry consistently over the past five years.
Services at the Renegade Pantry include:
Due COVID-19, pantry services have been available in a drive-thru fashion. Students are encouraged to complete a form available online to schedule a pickup date and time. The pantry has seen reduced numbers since spring 2020, but services remain available consistently. From July 1, 2020 to October 31, 2020, 913 students were served. To donate, please visit the Renegade Pantry webpage.
Additionally, the Renegade Pantry is currently accepting names for the annual Turkey Opportunity Drawing. “We are especially grateful to continue our annual tradition this year with the Turkey Drawing. Right around this time of year, generous donations pour in from the community, BC faculty and staff to provide frozen turkeys and hams to the Renegade pantry,” said Damania. “It is so important to us that every Renegade has the opportunity to enjoy the holidays with a complete meal, making a positive influence on them in their health, spirit, and educational success.”