UofL and Commonwealth Credit Union Partner to Combat Food Insecurity

The University of Louisville and Commonwealth Credit Union (CCU) have announced a new partnership to renovate the Cardinal Cupboard, a student-run food panty on the Belknap campus.

CCU has pledged $1 million towards a major renovation of the Cardinal Cupboard, as well as to pay student workers and support scholarships. Renovation will begin this summer with completion before the fall 2021 semester.

“As a university, we are dynamically connected to our local community, and it is partnerships like these that make our campus a vital ecosystem that creates thriving futures for our students,” said President Neeli Bendapudi. “Commonwealth Credit Union is a longtime and committed UofL partner, and we are so grateful for their dedication to our most vulnerable Cardinals.”

College students are negatively impacted by food insecurity. In 2018, a study surveying 43,000 college students found that approximately 36% of those students face a shortage of food.

The Cardinal Cupboard was established to increase accessibility to affordable nutritional items. Through fundraising and food drives, the pantry distributes food and health products to students in need in effort to reduce their financial burden.

Located in the Swain Student Activities Center, the goal of the food pantry is to reduce food waste on campus by allowing students, faculty, and staff to donate unwanted food items and offer it to those in need. It is estimated that the Cardinal Cupboard serves nearly 100 UofL students monthly.

“We are thankful for the commitment to help our students who have the greatest need to make sure that they have the support and the resources that they need not only to let UofL be their home, but also to make sure this is a place that they can succeed and thrive and launch into great opportunities in the future,” said Michael Mardis, dean of students and vice president for Student Affairs.

Commonwealth Credit Union has been UofL’s official credit union since 2015 and is a full-service financial partner for students, faculty, staff, and alumni.

“We want the students to have the resources they need to succeed in the future,” said Karen Harvin, president and CEO of Commonwealth Credit Union. “We know if you are hungry, you can't learn. This Cardinal Cupboard is a mainstay, and we are thrilled to be a part of the solution for that.”

Source: UofL and Commonwealth Credit Union Partner to Combat Food Insecurity (UofL Alumni News, April 2021)