Choice food pantry at Sister Visitor is all about dignity, coordinator says

Myya Little, coordinator of the new choice food pantry at the Sister Visitor Center, 2235 W. Market St., gave Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz a tour March 10. The choice pantry allows clients to shop for items in a setting resembling a grocery store. (Photo Special to The Record)

Myya Little knows what it’s like to be a new mom in need. She brings that empathy and understanding to her role as pantry coordinator of the new “choice food pantry” at Catholic Charities of Louisville’s Sister Visitor Center.

“I’m humbled because I know how it feels to need things. I used to live in the alley behind Sister Visitor as a young mom. I would come over here and get help,” she said in an interview earlier this week.

The redesigned food pantry looks and functions like a small grocery store, said Little, a graduate of the Catholic Charities’ Common Table program, where she earned her Louisville Metro Food Service Manager Certification.

Sister Visitor Center, 2235 W. Market Street, received a $45,000 grant from Dare to Care Food Bank to initiate the pantry project. Save-A-Lot and Kroger also helped the pantry with supplies.

Previously, the center operated a traditional food pantry, where clients picked up pre-packaged food supplies. The new choice pantry allows clients, who are accompanied by a personal shopper, to choose from items such as canned goods, fresh produce, bread, frozen meat and personal hygiene items.

Little said the goal of the pantry is to serve clients with dignity.

Myya Little, coordinator of the new choice food pantry at the Sister Visitor Center, 2235 W. Market St., gave Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz a tour March 10. The choice pantry allows clients to shop for items in a setting resembling a grocery store. (Photo Special to The Record)

“The people feel a sense of pride coming in to get this food. Not only is that because they are picking their own food, but because of the sense of community,” Little said.

The pantry is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Volunteer personal shoppers are needed to assist in the pantry. A volunteer accompanies one client at a time to assist with item selection. Two volunteers are needed for five hours each day. Volunteers can work any shift from two to five hours. For more information, visit cclou.org/volunteer.

Sister Visitor serves residents of the Portland, Russell and Shawnee neighborhoods. It is a Dare to Care food pantry and a member of the Association of Community Ministries. It has served west Louisville since 1969.

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