By SAMANTHA PIDDE

Area volunteers along with the River Bend Foodbank in Davenport, Iowa, are helping the West Carroll School District provide food to its students and families.

Dalene Skimhorn from the West Carroll Food Pantry said the pantry has been in operation at the West Carroll School District for the past four years.

The pantry was initially funded by the Kasbohm family, in "loving memory" of Aeron James Kasbohm. Skimhorn said the family donated funds for the pantry's freezer and refrigerator.

The River Bend Foodbank then took it over, offering a variety of food to the West Carroll Food Pantry at discounted prices.

"Every one dollar we get, we can buy five meals from the River Bend food pantry," said Skimhorn, adding that additional donations help her and other volunteers purchase more difficult items, such as meat.

For the first few years, the West Carroll Food Pantry has been housed in the primary school building, but Skimhorn said location was rather small.

This past summer the pantry was relocated to an empty room at West Carroll High School. Skimhorn said the new space is much more spacious, providing more room for all of the food items and allowing volunteers to distribute the food more easily.

The West Carroll Food Pantry is open to families within the school district, with no requirements to participate other than having a student in attendance at one of the schools.

Volunteers distribute food to families from 3:30-5 p.m. on the first and third Mondays of every month. The only exception is when one of those days falls on a Monday holiday. In that case, the distribution date is moved to the following Monday.

West Carroll Supt. Julie Katzenberger expressed her gratitude to those involved in the pantry, calling it a great addition to the high school building.

"The school food pantry is an excellent opportunity for all West Carroll students to be well-nourished throughout the school year," said Katzenberger. "Through continuous donations from the Kasbohm family, we are very fortunate to have the food pantry available to students and their families."

The food pantry is stocked with an assortment of meat in the freezer, fresh fruits and vegetables and a variety of non-perishable items (cereals, canned goods, etc.).

"We are so very thankful for the gift of a food pantry and the volunteers in our West Carroll community," said Supt. Katzenberger.

Skimhorn said she is thankful to everyone who continues to donate to the West Carroll Food Pantry, including area businesses.

She asked that anyone wanting to write donation check to make it out to the "WC Food Pantry." Any checks written to River Bend Foodbank must go directly to the Davenport office, she explained.