| LIFE AT WSU | Student Services | Thea's Pantry
Tackling food insecurity.
As the university has moved to online learning due to the coronavirus (COVID-19), we know that there are many challenges associated with this and we at Thea's Pantry want you to know that we are still open for you!
We have temporarily moved the pantry's location to the 1st floor of Wasylean Hall in what was the Woo Scoops space. We are open Monday to Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and although the campus is closed to visitors and the community, the University Police Department know that guests will be visiting the new pantry location.
We ask that you follow these precautions when visiting the pantry:
Please be mindful when you visit the pantry, we ask that you only take what you need as supply from the Worcester County Food Bank is limited during this time. There will be some bags available there for your convenience, but they are not very big, so please come prepared.
If you find yourself needing more food or other items or resources to help you continue to focus on learning, please make an application for the Student Emergency Fund
Thea’s Pantry provides food and other essentials to students, staff, and faculty in need. Run from the Student Center on campus, the pantry provides a confidential service for those in need. The only requirement for making use of the pantry is possession of a WSU OneCard.
The pantry was established to help address the plight of students who experience food insecurity so they can stay focused on their studies and successfully complete their education. The food-pantry effort has involved students from the SNAP practicum, which awards course credit to students who help in the campus SNAP office and other projects; Worcester State Enactus, an entrepreneurial club that’s very involved with community service; and the Urban Studies Club, which works on several anti-hunger and community initiatives.
Swipe It Forward is a program run by the Hunger Outreach Team, Thea's Pantry, and Chartwells. Students in need can request and receive meal swipes to be used at the POD in Sheehan Hall. The program works by collecting donated guest swipes from resident students during the first month of every semester. These meal swipes are then redistributed to students in need through Thea's Pantry. The meal swipes are loaded onto the student's OneCard and are no different from regular meal swipes. To request meal swipes, simply visit Thea's Pantry or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The SNAP office provides students with peer support in a safe, confidential space. SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), the program formerly known as food stamps, provides food purchasing assistance for low- and no-income people, including students. The office provides information about the program and participant eligibility, and accepts applications for SNAP benefits.
The pantry is named after Thea Aschkenase, a 2007 alumna of Worcester State University who was a life-long advocate against hunger. Aschkenase was a Holocaust survivor who was liberated from the Auschwitz concentration camp in 1945. She and her husband, Efraim, emigrated from Palestine to Worcester in 1954. At age 92, she authored a memoir, Remembering: A Holocaust Survivor Shares Her Life.
In addition to being a voice of remembrance of the Holocaust, she also made it her mission to help others. She graduated with a degree in Urban Studies in her early 80s and, through her connection with the Intergenerational Urban Institute, volunteered to help hungry children and adults gain access to nutritious food.
You can help support Thea’s Pantry and feed people in need with your donations.
All shelf-stable food donations are welcomed. Ideas include:
Note: the pantry cannot accept damaged, opened, or expired items.
Donations can be dropped off at the pantry on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., or by appointment by emailing email@example.com
Pantry HoursMonday - Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Urban Studies DepartmentSuite S-129Auai@worcester.edu