Frequently Asked Questions
Do I qualify? What's the income limit?
If you're a Weymouth resident and meet the US Department of Agriculture's income guidelines, you qualify. If you don't meet the income guidelines, but your family is still dealing with food insecurity (doesn't always know where its next meal is coming from), please come see us and we can talk about your situation.
If you aren't a Weymouth resident, there are lots of resources out there, please contact Project Bread's FoodSource hotline at 1-800-645-8333 anytime between 8am and 7pm Monday through Friday, or on Saturday between 10am and 2pm.
What can I expect if I go?
When you come in, you'll find the waiting room and can get a number and a shopping list there. The shopping list changes daily and is based on the food we have in the Food Pantry that day. On it, you'll select which foods meet your family's diet. Next, a friendly volunteer interviewer will call your number and you'll follow her (the interviewers are all women) into another room where she'll talk with you about your financial situation and direct you to any resources that may assist you beyond the Food Pantry. This is a good time to ask questions as our volunteers are very knowledgeable.
The interviewer will ask and record your answers to many questions. Please know that the interviewers aren't trying to be nosey with all their questions, they are merely gathering data that helps us apply for grants, meet reporting requirements, and speak to the community about the situations people seeking food are facing. Your personal information will never be reported with your name.
When your interview is done, your interviewer will give your shopping list to another volunteer who will shop for you in our stock room. In the meantime, you are free to choose some items from our miscellaneous donations shelf. A volunteer will call your number when your groceries are packed and ready. We can even give you some help getting your groceries to your car should you need it. If you don't have a vehicle and aren't within walking distance, we can help you get home with all your groceries-- ask your interviewer how.
Is the Food Pantry wheelchair accessible?
Sadly, no. We've been very lucky to be housed by the Immaculate Conception Church for many years, though the location is not wheelchair accessible. This year (2015), we're looking for a new location and are prioritizing ADA accessibility in that search. For now, you will need to walk up two sets of four stairs to get into and out of the Food Pantry. Should you need to use the restroom while you're here, the facilities are located down two flights of stairs in the basement.
The alternative we offer to our clients for whom the building is not accessible is home delivery. Please contact us for more details about how that service works. Again, we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience and are prioritizing accessibility in our new home.
How often can I come?
For most families, it's once monthly, though you might qualify for more frequent visits and we can direct you to other helpful food resources as well.
How do I get S.N.A.P. (a.k.a. food stamps)? Do I qualify?
If you are coming to the Food Pantry or are planning to come, it is likely that you qualify for the S.N.A.P. program. To find out immediately, head to www.gettingsnap.org or call the FoodSource hotline at 1-800-645-8333 anytime between 8am and 7pm Monday through Friday, or on Saturday between 10am and 2pm.
What if I can't make your open hours?
Please call us between 8am and noon Tuesday through Friday if you aren't able to make our service hours and we can try to set up another time when you can come by and pick up food.
What kind of food do you provide and how much?
The Food Pantry provides 3-4 days' worth of supplemental food for most families. The food we have changes daily depending on what we've been able to gather from various sources around town and beyond. You will select all the food yourself, so you won't get anything you don't need or want. The food that's available mostly consists of staples: fruits and vegetables, meat (there's usually a vegetarian option), eggs, cheese, milk, bread and other things like pasta, applesauce, peanut butter, canned tuna or chicken, etc. There's also a shelf of miscellaneous items from which you'll be able to select a number of items you'd like.
Where does the food come from?
We purchase much of the food at a wholesale price or at a highly discounted rate from the Greater Boston Food Bank, local farms, and restaurant suppliers. We also distribute lots of food your neighbors around town have donated (schools, churches, neighborhood associations, businesses, etc.). Most of that food is non-perishable, but some of it comes from local gardening projects, people's backyard gardens, or cases of fresh food people have donated. Many local grocery stores pitch in as well, including Whole Foods in both Weymouth and Hingham, BJs, Shaw's, and Stop & Shop. When you come in, the food you'll get will come from a variety of these sources.