Welcome to Benny's Food Pantry and The Urban Gardens at The City College of New York
Benny's Food Pantry was first launched in 2017, in a small shared office space in the Colin Powell School. We were inspired by the opening of the UCLA Food Pantry and the wonderful work they were doing for their student communities. In 2019, we moved to a new, larger space in the Hoffman Lounge area of the North Academic Complex (NAC) and renamed the pantry "Benny's" as a way to anchor the tradition of our pantry to the founding mission of our college to "open the doors to all."
In 2019, through the generosity of the Foundation for City College and a project inspired by the Moxie Foundation, we were able to open the Urban Gardens at City College. The Gardens, which serve as both a teaching space and a resource for the pantry, are cared for by our community through partnerships with the Office of the President, Office of Institutional Advancement and Communications, Campus Engagement Network, CCNY-AMC Outdoors Initiative, and Campus Facilities. It also expands upon the important work of other garden spaces on campus that are managed by the teams responsible for the Solar Roof Pod at the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, the CUNY School of Medicine, and CCNY Green. We would also like to thank The Carroll and Milton Petrie Foundation for their support in combating food insecurity through their partnership and generosity.
By working together, Benny's Food Pantry's long-term goal is to produce 1,000 pounds of fresh food for sharing with our CUNY community. For more information on our annual planting schedule, please feel free to email Dee Dee Mozeleski at firstname.lastname@example.org , Tiffanie Burt at email@example.com , Edson at firstname.lastname@example.org and Michelle Ortega at email@example.com .
Hours of The Pantry
The Pantry is open from Monday - Friday 10 AM - 6 PM.
If for any reason the pantry doors are closed please contact the public safety officer at the front of the NAC building to open the doors.
Open To Anyone In The CUNY Community
Due to Covid-19’s impact on our community-at-large, Benny’s Food Pantry was able to expand to be a resource open to anyone in the City University of New York community - meaning if you're a student, a member of our staff, or on faculty at a college within the CUNY system, you are welcome to visit Benny's whenever you or someone you care for is in need. We want to serve as a resource to anyone who finds themselves in need throughout the year.
In addition to providing food assistance, Benny’s Pantry is a gateway to connect students and their families, faculty, and staff to critical support services such as:
- SNAP benefits;
- Emergency grants through referrals to the Colin Powell School (for CPS Majors), OIAC, or Student Affairs, depending on the type of need;
- Emergency housing referrals;
- Job preparation and training through referrals to our CPDI team;
- Health workshops and nutrition training, co-sponsored as part of our World Food Day Initiatives and food pantry demo days throughout the year
Benny's Food Pantry
Every visitor is encouraged to take what they need for a family of up to four (4) people. And, while we work hard to ensure the pantry is stocked with a range of non-perishable food items, taking into consideration a wide variety of dietary needs and restrictions of our community, we hope that our visitors will also let us know of any special needs they would like us to consider when placing new orders each month.
Benny's is here for anyone who needs to visit throughout the year. We would really appreciate it if you would help us spread the word.
Benny’s is an all-volunteer initiative of The City College of New York. However, we do require donations to help us maintain a well-stocked pantry, to ensure that our Urban Gardens are able to open for planting each year. Additionally, donations allow us to provide internship support for our students without whom our Pantry could not exist. To make a contribution today, please follow the link below to access our donation form.
Want your students to know about Benny’s?
Please consider adding the following language to your class syllabi:
Benny’s pantry, located on the ground floor of the NAC, is open to anyone within the CUNY community (students, staff, faculty), in need of support. Benny’s is self-serve and open 10 am - 6 pm. Additional emergency support for financial, health, and housing needs are also available through Benny’s. Please contact Dee Dee Mozeleski at dmozeleski@ccny.CUNY.edu , Tiffanie Burt at firstname.lastname@example.org , Edson Amaya Perez at email@example.com or Michelle Ortega at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
What is SNAP?
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly called Food Stamps, is the largest federal program aimed at combating hunger and food insecurity. SNAP benefits are provided through an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, similar to a bank debit card or credit card. Click here to learn more!
Food Donations: Drop off items to the pantry
Examples of things we can accept:
Canned goods (soups, vegetables, beans, tuna, etc) jars of food like spaghetti sauce, fruit, vegetables, boxes of pasta, etc. At this time, with so much of the College working and learning from off-campus, we can not take donations of fresh foods, but hope to be able to in the new year.
What we can't accept:
Items in plastic or shrink-wrap, personal items, clothing, housewares, etc.