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Support the Chico Cares Campaign

The Chico Cares Campaign will help Chico State address the full spectrum of students’ basic needs, including the growing demand for emergency housing, food resources, and other immediate needs.

With your support, we can ensure that hunger and housing insecurity will never stand in the way of our students' success. Together, we care. Together, we give. Together, we will transform tomorrow.

Help Us Meet Students' Basic Needs

The Chico Cares Endowment and Annual Fund was initiated by a generous gift from the Chico Chapter of the California Faculty Association to support the Chico State Basic Needs Project, which provides nutritious food, short-term emergency housing, and emergency grants for students experiencing significant financial stress and poverty.

  • $20 provides 120 cans of chicken soup
  • $50 provides 75 pounds of local, quality apples
  • $100 provides 15 hot meals for hungry students
  • $200 provides a week of safe emergency housing for a student in crisis
  • $1,500 can sponsor a program intern for one semester

The main components of the Chico State Basic Needs Project include 

  • Hungry Wildcat Food Pantry 
  • Farm-to-Student Veggie Buck Program, providing organic produce via the University Farm Organic Vegetable Project and other local farms
  • CalFresh Outreach food benefit program assistance and promotion
  • Displaced and Homeless Student Services, providing short-term emergency housing
  • Quality meal access, including
    • immediate meal access at campus dining facilities
    • post-catering event text notification system
  • Emergency Grant Program, providing economic crisis assistance
  • Education and advocacy, including
    • Research, classroom integration, and service learning
    • Project outreach, fundraising, and grant development

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How many Chico State students experience food insecurity?

A recent Chico State student survey conducted by our Center for Healthy Communities indicated that 8,000 students (46 percent) suffer from low to very low food security. The USDA defines food insecurity as having problems or anxiety about consistently accessing adequate food, with impacts to the quality, variety, and desirability of a diet and the potential for disrupted eating patterns or reduced food intake. 

Q: What is the University doing to address student food insecurity?

The Hungry Wildcat Food Pantry was established in 2013 and has provided 23 tons of food assistance to more than 2,500 students, representing more than 38,000 meals. Through the support of CalFresh Outreach and our Center for Healthy Communities, the pantry provides application assistance for CalFresh, which is California’s USDA SNAP supplemental food program. The pantry also provides hygiene products and referrals to campus and community services for students in need. The Pantry is a key component of the Chico State Basic Needs Project, which the Chico Cares Campaign supports.

Q: How big is the problem of student housing displacement and homelessness?

In a 2015 research study, the California State University estimated that one in 12 CSU students are currently displaced or experience homelessness. Current research is underway to answer that question on the Chico State campus.

Q: What is the University doing to address student housing insecurity?

The School of Social Work, Financial Aid, University Housing, and Student Affairs have teamed up to develop a program to provide short-term emergency housing for students in financial crisis. The program is currently under development with an expected launch in fall 2017.

Q: Where do my donations go when I contribute?

Your gift will go directly toward the provision and distribution of nutritious food, short-term emergency housing, and emergency grants for students experiencing significant financial stress and poverty.

Q: Why is the Chico Cares Campaign so important?

Poor nutrition and stress from unmet basic needs are proven to hinder student development and academic performance, which are the heart of Chico State's mission to educate and serve tomorrow’s leaders. If we continue to work together as a community, we can help address these challenges and provide a supportive environment that ensures the success of our students in need.

Q: How do I refer a student in need?

If you know a student who can use our services, please refer them to the Hungry Wildcat Food Pantry in Siskiyou 109A or Kendall 110, or call 530-898-6131.

Q: I am a Chico State faculty or staff member; can I contribute through a payroll deduction?

Yes, you can join your colleagues by completing the University's Payroll Deduction Authorization Form. You can choose to apply your gift to either or both of the following funds.

  • Chico Cares Annual Fund #06824, which supports the immediate operating costs of the Basic Needs Project
  • Chico Cares Endowment #18006, which invests in the long-term needs of the Basic Needs Project. Your gift will be added to the endowed fund and invested. A portion is then used to help future students in need.   

You can also learn more about the various ways to give at www.csuchico.edu/giving.

Q: How can I learn more about getting involved in the Chico State Basic Needs Project? 

Contact Kathleen Moroney at 530-898-6131 or Joe Picard at 530-898-5679 to learn more about how to support the Chico State Basic Needs Project.


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