East Chicago food pantry partners with Food Bank of Northwest Indiana to serve community

EAST CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Food Bank of Northwest Indiana partners with over 100 partner pantries within their service region, and one pantry in East Chicago is helping Feed the Love.

"I've seen a lot of people that, when they come in, they tell you, 'Thank you so much for doing this because we wouldn't be able to do another day if it wasn't for the food bank,'" said Tanisha Welch, who coordinates the pantry as a volunteer.

Welch runs the pantry alongside Lisa Johnson, whose husband is the head pastor at New Mission of Jesus Christ Church. Johnson runs a child care business in the area, and donates her employees time to help with food pick up and distribution.

Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, food is distributed through a curbside pick-up system to a line of cars that stretches around the block.

"Over this season, with the pandemic and with the COVID, we've seen our numbers drastically increase," Johnson said.

Along with produce, meats, milk, and non-perishables, the church also gives out free PPE, clothing, and cleaning supplies to those in need.

"I'm just thank that I'm, right now, not in the position where I have to be in that line," Welch said. "But I know one day I could be. And if I was, I would hope that somebody like me would be able to be there to help."

You can help Feed the Love by donating to our virtual food drive.

If you're in need of food, you can call 773-247-FOOD or click here to locate a food pantry near you.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.