FROM Food Pantry Undergoes Renovation

The Food Pantry at Flat River Outreach Ministries (FROM) is looking a little brighter and a whole lot more spacious! Earlier this year, thanks to the support of local financial partners and a number of volunteers, we were able to make much needed renovations to our food pantry.

“The old layout wasn’t conducive to our needs,” Kelly Glas, Healthy Food Program Coordinator said about the Food Pantry. “The shelving units were becoming unstable and unsafe, one of our refrigerators was getting old and needed replacing and the old flooring was worn out from years of walking on it.”

When you visit, you’ll notice instead of bright red flooring, there will be slip-resistant neutral flooring. Instead of bulky tan shelving in the middle of the room, you’ll find sleek black shelving along the walls.

The intention behind the design, Kelly shared, was to make the pantry more inviting to our program participants.

“One of our values at FROM is Welcome, and we kept that in mind as we chose paint colors and design,” she said. “We want our pantry to be more inviting for our neighbors who come in.”

It can be hard for people to come to FROM for help, and it was important that this renovation make a welcoming environment that would make people comfortable to come in, and valued and respected while they shopped.

We’ve asked our participants to share their feedback, and make suggestions, and overall our participants really enjoy the changes that were made.

“I loved it,” one participant shared. “It was very easy to navigate between shoppers. Great experience!”

Other participants agreed saying it “makes it look more like a store, more spacious.”

We are thankful for our entire community for coming together to make this project possible.

“Truly this project would not have been possible without our incredible volunteers,” Arianne Hall, Development Director said. “We had a number of volunteers who helped us every step of the way – from helping with the design, painting, taking down old shelving and assembling new shelving. We are so thankful for all of our talented volunteers who helped make this project possible”

In addition to volunteers, financial partners including Amway and LCTV Fund allowed us to purchase a new refrigerator, shelving and update the flooring. West Michigan Garage Interiors updated the floor and Sherwin-Williams of Ionia provided the paint.

Our Food Pantry will continue to be open Tuesday 2-4 p.m., Wednesday 5-7 p.m. and Friday 10 a.m. – noon for any family living in the Lowell Area School District making 200% of the poverty line or less, or is in need of food.

FROM can always use additional items for our Food Pantry. Please consider purchasing extra items the next time you grocery shop like laundry detergent, dish and hand soap, shampoo and conditioner, toothpaste and toothbrushes. These are high need items. To see our whole Food Pantry wish list, or to coordinate a food drive, email Arianne Hall, our Development Director at

You can also read more in the Lowell Ledger here: