As costs of living increase, so does the need to support food-insecure students. Recently at Cal State Dominguez Hills, two students reached out to CFA Dominguez Hills chapter to support their food pantry campaign. One of the students took it upon themselves to create a modest pantry outside their dorm room, where they shared their limited resources with their peers.
The CFA Dominguez Hills executive board was both inspired and horrified that students depended on mutual aid rather than a durable and thoughtful campus program to ease the pangs of hunger. CFA campus leaders also learned that CSU Dominguez Hills is one of two CSU campuses with no food pantry.
CFA campus president and professor of criminology and sociology Dr. La Tanya Skiffer explained that her initial attempts to support students were met with skepticism.
“Administrators don’t recognize the relationships between students and faculty. We are the first line of defense for whatever problems they have. So naturally, we jumped in and helped them,” Skiffer said. “Student learning conditions are our working conditions and vice versa.”
In response to the students’ pleas for help, CFA organized a GoFundMe campaign to fund a food pantry. This fundraiser is organized by the Students for Quality Education and CFA DH chapter. By the morning of December 2, the campus chapter announced that they exceeded their $2,000 goal in one day with donations continuing. The chapter also voted and approved a $500 donation.
The fundraiser, while successful, does not absolve campus leadership from their responsibility to support food-insecure students. CFA Dominguez Hills member leaders and students will be organizing to ensure a permanent solution to persistent hunger on campus. CFA held a Zoom meeting with campus president Dr. William Franklin where students and faculty shared a list of demands.
Skiffer explained that “the university already receives funds for a food pantry, and there is no knowledge where those funds went. We need an audit.”
Note: Dr. La Tanya Keffler would like to give a special thanks to Isaac Shannon, Jaiden Villanueva, and CFA Field Rep Kelly Anthony for their hardwork on the DH Student Food Insecurity campaign. “Without your efforts, courage, and compassion, this campaign would not have been such a success!” Keffler said.