Food pantries feed hungry students in Prosser

Brayden Webb is an 8th grader at Hausel Middle School in Prosser. He was sitting in the cafeteria one day, when he saw a woman lugging food and cans around. “I see her moving stuff a lot and always struggling with things and I asked her one day what was she doing and if she needed help,” says Webb. Since then, he has helped run the Colt Cabinet, a food pantry at the school, stocked with snacks, toiletries, and school supplies for students in need.

The pantry was started by Communities in Schools Site Coordinator, Rene Martinez, who explains many families must make sacrifices at the grocery store and may not always be able to buy simple necessities that the pantry can provide. “By taking Care of the basic needs, then the students can also focus on academics in school,” says Martinez.

She was inspired by Prosser High School teacher, Brett Dillahunt, who started a similar pantry in the Fall. Both pantries are supported by donations from the community.

“There's a huge benefit to a school community and culture where students realize they are cared about,” says Dillahunt. “That someone cares about whether their family gets by, whether they have food on the weekend… and that builds rapport and relationships with students that are invaluable.”

The majority of Prosser School District is on free or reduced lunch programs. The programs are part of bigger charities called the “Mustangs for Mustangs” program and the “Bite To Go” program.  

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