By Cam Alsbrook
Starting Jan. 29, the Cameron University Office of Campus Life partnered with the Lawton Food Bank for the “Lawton Food Bank @ CU” program, letting students who applied before Jan. 26 receive food.
The program’s goal is to provide food for full-time and part-time students across a four-month timeline, with the office of Campus Life acting as a collection zone for four days.
In order to qualify for the program, students need to pick up and fill out an application provided by Campus Life.
Applications only need to be turned in once per calendar year, but students who need to receive food should check- in with Campus Life each month to confirm receipt. Part-time students will need to show proof of income as part of the requirements.
Further requirements, which apply to all applicants, include a government issued ID or Cameron ID, an enrollment schedule and proof of address if living off campus. Campus residents can provide a letter from the Cameron University Housing Department instead.
New applicants should apply by these dates, and people who already applied should check in by the dates.
Food distribution periods are Fridays at 10:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., after the Tuesdays listed below.
The deadlines for the next application periods are Feb. 26, March 26 and April 23.
The food students receive is dependent on the food bank – nonperishables, fresh produce, frozen meats and other types of food.
Students that live on campus in dorms can opt in to receiving foods that require little preparation.
Director of Campus Life Leslie Cothren said that students can help other students through the Lawton Food Bank.
“Donate directly to the Lawton Food Bank.” Cothren said. “As we are using their services and their resources, donating directly to them helps supplement this program for students.”
Families can also apply for the program, with requirements including IDs for all household children and adult residents.
Cameron students in a family unit can apply with the prerequisites mentioned above.
Student Organizations can volunteer to help during other partnered events and set up their own partnerships to help the campus community.
Coordinator of Campus Life Daniel McFadden said that student organizations should contact campus life regarding partnership event scheduling.
“Find a partnership that the organization is passionate about and aligns with the mission.” McFadden said. “Therefore, both sides could benefit from the partnership. When it comes to scheduling, don’t be afraid to reach out and see what [resources] the organization needs.”
Students that are interested in joining student organizations and helping with volunteer opportunities can find a directory for contact information on the Cameron website.
Cothren said that the experience of helping students receive food has taught them the value of the partnership program.
“I am happy that students are aware of the program and are using it.” Cothren said. “However, I’m always sad to hear just how many students don’t have the resources to fill up their own fridges and cabinets with food.
So, I’m happy students use the program but I’m sad there is such a need for the program.”
Students with further questions about the program or volunteering can contact the Campus Life office at 581-2217.