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Denver neighborhood seeing more need at food pantries

The Montbello Organizing Committee said demand has exploded during the COVID-19 pandemic.

DENVER, Colorado — For 11 years, the Montbello Organizing Committee (MOC) has held mobile food pantries the first and third Thursday of every month for families in need.

However, in the midst of stay-home orders and missed paychecks, the committee said those pantries are seeing more traffic.

MOC is an organization that provides Montebello residents "with the tools and resources necessary to.. proactively address the issues affecting their quality of life."  

Donna Garnett, the executive director of MOC said the mobile pantries normally serve about 120 people. The first one held in April served about 1,700 people.

The most recent mobile food pantry opened Thursday in Montbello High School’s east parking lot.

Blue tents covered boxes upon boxes of food from Food Bank of the Rockies from the falling snow.

Volunteers bundled up in jackets and gloves, their faces covered by the masks Governor Polis wants Coloradans to wear, packed boxes of food and placed them in the cars of those who drove up in need of help.

Credit: Montbello Organizing Committee

Within two hours, the organization said the pantry had run out of food.

The next mobile food pantry will be held the morning of May 7, again in Montbello High School’s east parking lot.

MOC also holds a daily food pantry Monday through Friday in partnership with the Struggle of Love Foundation at 12000 E. 47th Avenue.

Garnett said that in recent weeks, those daily pantries have served almost 700 people a day.

While the pantries are held in northeast Denver, Garnett said they will not turn anyone away.

For more information about where to get food in northeast Denver, you can check out the Montbello Organizing Committee’s Facebook page or you can email montbellofreshlo@gmail.com.

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