SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – A food pantry at a Sioux Falls university now has even more options for students after moving into a new location.

The Cougar Cupboard was started to help students facing food insecurity at the University of Sioux Falls.

What began as just a few shelves in the lower level of the library, now has its own dedicated space in a room just down the hall.

“We wanted to move to this location to provide more privacy for our students, so the cupboard is all anonymous, we just ask that students write down what items they take for our inventory, but otherwise we want it to be more private for them,” resident director of North Hall, coordinator housing and operations, Kristin Kotas said.

This new space even includes a fridge and freezer, giving students options like yogurt, lunch meat, and eggs.

“We are able to offer complete meals, so we had mac and cheese, and now we can offer the noodles, milk, and butter and we’re able to offer ground beef to really round out those meals,” Kotas said.

“There’s no limit, so students can come and go at any time that they want and they can grab as many items as they want,” associate director of student life and multicultural student programs, Allan Idjau said.

The food pantry also receives a donation from Breadsmith every Wednesday.

Kotas says she restocks the pantry around every two weeks.

“Since we started tracking in August, we’ve had over 1,000 items tracked, and I’m assuming those numbers are low, I’m assuming we would have like 1,800 items taken since August,” Kotas said.

And moving to this location just a week ago, both say the food pantry is already making an impact.

“We had over 20 students come last Thursday alone and I already needed to restock, so it’s been a lot of great feedback and I’ve heard a lot of great things which is excited to have support from the university,” Kotas said.

The Cougar Cupboard originally opened in the spring of 2021 and is open during the same hours as the library.