The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Photo credit: Nick Shockey / nshockey.express@gmail.com
A letter from the editor
February 6, 2024

Davis Center provides food to help students in need

photo
G Imenez (left), biology major, receives food during the weekly food distribution at the Davis Center on Thursday, Nov, 14, 2019. (Amelia Biscardi/abiscardi.express@gmail,com)

With a large plastic container of butternut squash, loaves of bread and pumpkin pie, the City College Davis Center is ready to help feed both students and community members—especially over the holidays.

Every Thursday the Davis Center from noon–1 p.m. (except for Thanksgiving) hosts a food distribution with food provided by the Yolo Food Bank. Students line up with bags in hand and write down their names and how many people live in their household. 

From there, they pick out food, according to Jacek Kozikowski, the Davis Center office supervisor.

“I would love [students] to know that it’s here and that we’re doing this, that it’s open, that there’s no catch to this,” Kozikowski said. “We’re not collecting any data; we’re not tracking anything. I want them to feel like they can come out and just get something to eat.”

Davis is not the only City College Center that does regular food distribution. According to the City College website, RISE, in partnership with the Sacramento Food Bank, hosts food distribution on the main campus Wednesdays from noon–4 p.m. in front of the College Store. 

As of September, the City College West Sacramento Center, in partnership with the Yolo Food Bank, offers food distribution to students the first and third Wednesdays of each month from 1:30–5 p.m on campus.

Kozikowski said that the Davis Center as a whole wanted to focus on basic needs for the students and have been organizing this project since last summer. Then the center’s new dean, Dr. Andrea Gaytan, began negotiating with the Yolo Food Bank to start a distribution on the campus.

The Yolo Food Bank goes to Trader Joe’s and Safeway to retrieve donations and brings the food to campus. From there, the front office staff, with assistance from volunteers, sorts through food and sets up for weekly distribution. 

“We have a lot of students that are always looking for something to eat. We noticed that even if we provide like little snacks or something, a lot of students will just come by,” said Kozikowski. “You just hear the little comments like, ‘Oh, I so needed this. I’m so starving right now.’ So yeah, we thought something like this would be a good idea.”  

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One of those hungry students, G Imenez, a City College student majoring in biology, takes advantage of the food distribution. Imenez appreciates the fact that the food is free and finds that it frees up her shopping time.

“I feel like there’s a lot of food insecurity on college campuses, and it’s really nice that they’re doing this for us,” Imenez said, “as well as the community members who are out here like 5 in the morning lined up.”

Though the food distribution had a bit of a slow start at the beginning of the semester, according to Kozikowski, more and more people have been coming.

“We definitely have hungry students out here in Davis, even though that might not be the kinda popular opinion out there. But we have students that really seem to enjoy this,” Kozikowski said. “I see a lot of the same faces come through the line every week.”

At the end of the line, Maham Baluch, an electrical engineering major, smiled with a container of pumpkin bundt cake in hand.

“I think people in the West Village [where the Davis Center is located] might know about it,” said Baluch. “But I’m sure that where I live, people don’t really know that this kind of stuff is happening.”  

Baluch remembered that her uncle once came to a food distribution on campus. 

“He was quite surprised that they are doing this kind of thing,” Baluch said.

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