Duncan Elementary's food pantry helping families in need

RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Duncan Elementary School's food pantry is the place to be during the Coronavirus outbreak. That's both good and bad. Good because it means people are able to get help and feed their families. Bad because so many right now have had to use the facility with other places closed.

"I think it's just so heartwarming to hear how the community as a whole in Reno just wants to help," said site organizer Carolina Juarez. "Every organization you can think of: United Way, Nevada Energy, Urban Roots, the food bank of Northern Nevada, we are all just pitching in and working together as a community during this time."

Carolina Juarez is Duncan's site coordinator for Communities in Schools. The national organization puts people in positions to help those in need. For the next few weeks kids won't be able to get their price-reduced or free lunches at school. That's where Carolina comes in.

"We are dropping off food bags to their house if they need it. So we're trying to be more proactive than reactive."

Aside from food, the pantry also has clothes, hygiene supplies, and school supplies for when kids have work to do outside of class. But everyday luxuries we take for granted are the most pressing need.

"The biggest things are access to technology," Juarez said. "So as we do distance learning I definitely see us shifting more with technology. Access to internet, I know that's a big thing. Access to having tablets with webcams or laptops with webcams just so we can physically contact and have contact with those kiddos and see how they are and genuinely check up on them is also big."

With students at home for the foreseeable future Juarez encourages those who are able to donate to donate so everyone can get by.

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