Open Door, The
The Open Door is a hunger relief organization dedicated to ending local hunger through access to healthy food. Through its collective programs, The Open Door serves almost 5,000 Dakota County residents each month, and distributes over 1 million pounds of food annually, 70% of which is fresh and/or perishable. Clients are able to access healthy food choices through a fixed-site food pantry in Eagan, 17 Mobile Pantry sites, the Mobile Lunchbox, and the Garden to Table program.
The Mobile Pantry program has been rapidly expanding in the past year, from 12 to 17 sites of service across Dakota County, including new service formats and clients of all ages, from secondary schools, to colleges, to churches and senior living facilities.
The Mobile Pantry operation of the Open Door is located in Apple Valley at: 14757 Energy Way, Apple Valley, MN 55124
The Mobile Pantry features three distinct volunteering shifts between the hours of 8am-4pm on weekdays (Monday-Friday), and these shifts are comprised as follows:
• Morning Intake/Stocking: Assist in receiving and storing our daily ‘food rescue’ from Target, Cub Foods & Fresh Thyme, then loading the perishable coolers for Mobile Pantry distribution that day – Shift: 8:30am-11am
• Mobile Pantry Driver & Shopper: Working in pairs, volunteers bring the Mobile Pantry vehicle to the assigned site for the given day, and assist clients in selecting, bagging, weighing and recording their food items received. Each client has a 10 minute appointment to shop through the Mobile Pantry selections, and a given site features 8-15 clients shopping each day, at each site. Shift: Hours vary slightly based on distribution sites, but commonly run between 11am-2pm
• Mobile Pantry Wrap-Up: Upon the return of the Mobile Pantry vehicle or vehicles, volunteers assist in off-loading and wiping down the perishable food coolers, and restocking the canned, dry goods bins for the next day’s site distribution. Shift: 2:30pm-4pm