Pantry fills the need of the community and beyond

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ELK MOUND, Wis. (WEAU)- An area church and a community are coming together to put food on the tables of families across the region.

Two years ago Shepherd of the Hill Lutheran Church in Elk Mound started distributing food through a program known as Ruby's Pantry.

Now the program is making its way to Eau Claire to help even more people feed their families.

“They will get About five loaves of bread, six pounds of potatoes, milk, juice, yogurt, chicken,” Elk Mound Site Coordinator for Ruby’s Pantry Greg Kinblom said.

Its might sound like your average trip to the grocery store but Ruby’s Pantry is far from it.

“Ruby’s Pantry is designed to be a food ministry. It’s not designed to be a hand out its designed to be a hand up,” Kinblom explained. “There are no qualifications; it’s designed for anyone to come. Your only qualification is you need to eat.”

Kinblom helped bring Ruby's Pantry to Elk Mound almost two years ago. The distribution service is based out of Minnesota and sends trucks of food to communities across Wisconsin and Minnesota. All you have to do to get nearly 70 pounds of food is fill out a quick registration form and pay a 20 dollar donation.

“I have a ten year old that is growing like a weed so it helps out a lot with cutting the grocery bill for that,” Elk Mound resident Leisha Scheffler said as she waited in line at the pantry Monday.

For Scheffler, the feeling of filling her car with food for her family is worth the trip to Ruby's Pantry nearly every month.

“It makes you feel like you leave here knowing you got your money's worth. Sometimes you walk out of the grocery store wondering if what you bought is really worth the money. Here you know it is,” Scheffler said.

For the nearly 70 volunteers that keep the lines of more than 200 pantry guests moving along the distribution line smoothly, helping out every month is something they look forward to.

“It’s really important that we help out. It's a great thing that makes people think that you are a helpful member of your community,” volunteer Wyatt Winter said.

Ruby's pantry will begin distributing food in Eau Claire next month. The distribution will be held at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd starting at 5:30 on Thursday April 3rd.

The next distribution in Elk Mound will be on April 21st starting at 5:30.

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