Occasionally I am asked, why does the Island Food Pantry close for the summer?

The rationale for our mid-October to mid-April season includes:

• Anytime throughout the year, food is available from the pantry. In April our Monday, Wednesday, Friday 2 to 4 p.m. distribution shifts to food given by appointment. When a client calls the pantry (508-693-0476) the client is given a staff person’s name and phone number, a mutually agreed-upon time is set and he or she receives three bags of food.

• Warm weather means no heating bills.

• People, including staff, return to their seasonal employment.

• It provides a break for most of our volunteers.

• When surveyed (twice in the last 10 years), our clients indicated our present system very acceptable.

My sincere thanks to all our volunteers, to a large number of off-Island visitors and to those who live on Martha’s Vineyard for your continued support of this expression of neighborly caring.

Armen Hanjian
Vineyard Haven

The writer is the Island Food Pantry coordinator.