Student resources during the pandemic

Penny Thieme: ( Thieme is a staff reporter and photographer for The Campus Ledger. She is a full-time, non-traditional student completing her education in Fine Art, Journalism and Women’s Studies through a KC Scholars Scholarship. She works as a contemporary artist, photojournalist, advocate and activist.

From photo sharing site Pixabay.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the spring 2020 semester will be completed through Canvas. Faculty and students are working to adapt their courses to the new platform and struggling to find a new normal in their daily lives. Without campus access, some students are facing new challenges and hardships.

According to the Student Basic Needs Center, their mission is “to provide information and resources to combat the hardships which adversely affect the ability of JCCC students to complete their academic, professional, and personal development objectives.”

With the campus closed, students in need will no longer have access the Student Basic Needs Center which provides various services students rely on, like the food pantry and the career closet.

Steve Franklin, the coordinator of Student Basic Needs, manages the operations of the center and assists students with other community resource information for housing, transportation and social services. He said approximately 30 students a week rely on the Cav Cupboard for food.

“Food insecurity is a significant issue among college students,” Franklin said. “This resource helps remove the barrier of food insecurity, which will allow students to focus on their studies. The pantry, Cav Cupboard, is part of the Student Basic Needs Center. We provide supplemental food for currently enrolled JCCC students in need.  Cav Cupboard also provides personal care items, as well as a Scholastic Pantry for school supplies.”

“The closure of the campus has sadly impacted us all,” Franklin said. “The convenience of Cav Cupboard has made it a valuable resource for students.  Fortunately, there are many other food pantries and meal services in our area that are open during this time.”

Franklin said the college is directing students to the Harvesters food assistance locator.

“By entering a zip code and selecting a Service Type (Pantry, Mobile Distribution or On-site Meals), the locator will provide a list of the closest food pantries and meal services within that zip code,” Franklin said. “While search results have been updated with special hours or closures due to COVID-19, it is best to call the service beforehand to be made aware of any schedule changes.”

The link to the Harvester’s food assistance locator is:

Information is available on the JCCC website and if students need assistance with other basic needs, they may reach Franklin at:

According to KC Scholars, adult learner scholars manager Camry Ivory, non-traditional students are being uniquely impacted. Every year the organization awards 200 adult learner scholarships. Approximately 30 of those recipients are currently enrolled at the college.

“I think [the community college is] more set up for non-traditional students,” Ivory said. “I think it’s more affordable, and they offer more flexible scheduling. They have evening classes, weekend classes and online classes.  Universities do too, but I think our community colleges have done a really good job of targeting and serving the needs of our adult learner population.”

“It’s already hard enough to go to school as an adult because you’ve got work, you’ve got responsibilities you’ve got families,” Ivory said. “But now you have this global health crisis and so you have adults who are out of work, adults who have lost childcare and who are now either trying to find employment or working from home with a child and then trying to homeschool that child. It’s so hard.”

Ivory said the COVID-19 crisis has magnified existing socio-economic inequities that already existed.

“The issues we’re seeing now have always been there so, I think this COVID 19 crisis is just bringing to light a lot of the economic inequalities that have existed for a long time in our country,” Ivory said. “Technology access, proper healthcare, paid time off and adequate childcare that’s nothing new but now we’re saying it’s a crisis.”

“As students have reached out to us, we are letting them know about resources that might be helpful to them so food pantry, food banks, utility assistance other job opportunities or even mental health resources,” Ivory said. “We’re just trying to be here however we can, to meet people where they are.”

KC Scholars has assembled a list of student resources for students in need of technology access, food, utility and rent assistance.

KC Scholars’ COVID-19 Kansas City Local & Online Resources
“In light of the recent COVID-19 health crisis, we are compiling a running list of helpful resources that are available either in the Greater Kansas City area (Jackson, Clay, Platte, & Cass Counties in Missouri; Johnson & Wyandotte Counties in Kansas) or online.”

If you know of additional resources that should be added to this list, please email


Food Assistance

  • NOTE: Most local school districts are offering free meals to all children under the age of 18 (even if your child is not enrolled in the district or not yet in school). There are drive-up and delivery drop-off locations. Please check your nearest school district’s website for information.
  • Harvesters Food Assistance Locator – Searchable database of food pantries and meal sites
  • Curbside KC– List of local restaurants offering curbside and/or delivery services
  • SNAP Helpline – Assistance with applying for SNAP Food Assistance benefits
  • The Rieger/Crossroads Community Kitchen – pay-what-you-can meals
  • Thelma’s Kitchen – Donate-what-you-can lunches (open M-F 11am-2pm)


  • RideKC – All buses in the metro area are currently running for free.

Housing & Utilities

Childcare & Family Resources

Technology Assistance

NOTE: Many phone carriers are now offering unlimited data, free hotspot data and/or free international calling.  Check with your provider or view a list of updates

  • Everyone On – Database of low-cost computers, internet providers, and tech literacy training programs
  • Connecting for Good KC – Low-cost desktop computers and laptops; curbside pick-up available
  • Spectrum Internet – Two months free to new households with students
  • Charter Internet – Two months free to new households with students
  • Comcast – Temporarily suspending late fees, disconnections, and data overages; new service package free for 60 days


Emotional Wellness

*Disponible en español

Physical & Emotional Wellness Online Resources



  • Federal Student Loans – information about temporarily pausing payments for federal student loans
  • Credit Cards – list of credit card companies offering hardship/assistance programs or payment deferrals
  • Auto Loans – list of banks and lenders offering assistance to borrowers impacted by COVID-19


  • Digital Library Branches – free access to ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, videos, & hundreds of online learning resources:

Catholic Charities-Olathe Emergency Assistance Center

333 E Poplar St.

Olathe, KS 66061



Catholic Charities-Overland Park Emergency Assistance Center

9806 W. 87th  St.

Overland Park, KS 66212



Central Church of the Nazarene (Confirmed 3/23/20)

12600 W. 87th St.

Lenexa, KS 66215



College Church of the Nazarene-Food Pantry (Currently Closed)

2020 E. Sheridan St.

Olathe, KS 66062



Edgerton United Methodist Church-Food Pantry (Left message)

300 E. 4th St.

Edgerton, KS 66021



First Christian Church of Olathe (confirmed 3/23/20)

200 E. Loula St.

Olathe, KS 66061



Gardner-Edgerton Multi-Service Center

501 W. Main St., Suite D

Gardner, KS 66030



Jewish Family Services-Food Pantry

5801 W. 115th St., Suite 103

Leawood, KS 66211



New Haven Seventh-Day Adventist Church

8714 Antioch Rd.

Overland Park, KS 66212



New Hope Church of God in Christ

1400 W. Santa Fe St.

Oalthe, KS 66061



North Central Multi-Service Center (Confirmed 3/23/20)

12425 W. 87th St. Pkwy, Suite 300

Lenexa, KS 66215



Northeast Multi-Service Center (Confirmed 3/23/20)

6000 Lamar, Suite 200

Mission, KS 66202



Northwest Multi-Service Center (Confirmed 3/23/20)

22123 W. 83rd. St.

Shawnee, KS 66227



Redemption Church-Via de Esperanza (Olathe Food Pantry)

1325 S. Ridgeview Rd.

Olathe, KS 66062



Salvation Army-Olathe

420 E. Santa Fe St.

Olathe, KS 66061



Shawnee Community Services Center

11110 W. 67th St.

Shawnee, KS 66203



Southwoods Christian Church

16110 Metcalf St.

Stilwell, KS 66085



St. Clare’s Episcopal Chruch

118 S. Main St.

Spring Hill, KS 66083



Stilwell Baptist Caring Ministry

19950 Broadmoor Ln.

Stilwell, KS 66085



Valley View United Methodist Church-Food Pantry

8412 W 95th St.

Overland Park, KS 66212



Village Food Pantry

9960 Mission Rd.

Leawood, KS 66206



Yachad-Kosher Food Pantry

6201 Indian Creek Dr.

Overand Park, KS 66207




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