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Ribbon cutting held for ICC's first food pantry

Ribbon cutting held for ICC's first food pantry

A mix of pirate pantry steering committee members and sponsors pose for a photo before the ribbon cutting for ICC’s new food pantry. (Left to right) Brittany Thornton, Cole Thornton, Anita Chappuie, Raechal Martin, Amber Gregory, Rebekah Peitz, Breeze Jones, Andrea Hucke, Sarah Owen, Mitchell Peitz, Jaicey Gillum

Independence Community College (ICC) cut the ribbon on the new ‘pirate pantry’ at the college’s campus on Friday, April 13. The pirate pantry is located in the northeast corner of the library in the academic building. 


The pirate pantry is made possible due to generous donations from supporting community members and businesses as well as the efforts of ICC steering committee.


The pirate pantry concept came to existence when ICC’s Director of Enrollment and Retention, Brittany Thornton and Assistant Director of Enrollment and Retention, Rebekah Peitz noticed a need and presented the idea to the college’s student success committee. The steering committee was then formed to develop the program. The annual ‘Dancing with the Indy Stars’, which happened on January 27, served as the program’s initial fundraiser.


The mission of the pirate pantry is to create a supportive college community by providing access to temporary food assistance and essential items. The pantry offers a variety of nutritious food products and hygiene items and is open to any current student enrolled in ICC classes.


“We are so excited about the opening of the pirate pantry,” said Rebekah Peitz. “I truly believe this will be of great service to ICC students and make their college experience a valuable one. Students realize that not only is ICC investing in them, but the community is too. The pirate pantry is a great resource for our students.”


The steering committee developed surveys that questioned ICC students and staff about the need of a food pantry on campus. The results confirmed the need for one and also helped determine what items to get during the first shopping trip to fill the pantry using a portion of the funds they have raised up to this point.  


The pirate pantry also accepts food and hygiene products donations. Some popular items are: Shampoo, body wash, toilet paper, cereal bars, pop-tarts, chips, spaghetti sauce, spaghetti noodles, shelf stable meals, Gatorade, water, milk, crackers, salsa, chips, oatmeal, cereal, canned soups and school supplies.


The pirate pantry opened to students one week prior to the ribbon cutting, and have had about 50 students come in to use it.   


“It’s going really great so far,” said Brittany Thornton. “The students are surprised that they can take the food and are always so thankful.”


For more information or questions about the pirate pantry, contact Rebekah Peitz at or 620-332-5605.