02/28/2024 McMurry News

(Abilene, Texas – Feb. 28, 2024) – McMurry University accepted a generous grant from H-E-B to support the Friends’ Closet, a program designed to support McMurry students facing food insecurity. The grant is part of H-E-B’s corporate initiative, Community Investment Program, which is supported through funds from the H-E-B Tournament of Champions Charitable Trust.

“Caring for our students’ physical and emotional needs, as well as their spiritual needs, is a high priority in the Division of Religious and Spiritual Life,” McMurry University Assistant Chaplain Rev. Dr. Russell Miller said. “One of our tools to meet some of the physical needs is our Friends’ Closet, where students can get snacks, fresh fruit, or basic meal items at no charge.”

A 2020 study from National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) at the U.S. Department of Education found that 23 percent of undergraduate students in the U.S. experience food insecurity. The McMurry Friends’ Closet exists to be a resource for students who are experiencing food insecurity. Due to the donations and partnerships with organizations like H-E-B, the Religious and Spiritual Life Division of McMurry can stock a food pantry with healthy food items, including fresh fruit, soups and microwave meals, peanut butter, oatmeal, and more at no charge to students.

“Knowing that H-E-B is a strong community partner for meeting food insecurity needs, we applied for and received this grant for which we are extremely grateful,” Miller said. “H-E-B’s generous donation will help us make sure we are able to adequately meet the needs of our campus.”

The funds will be used to purchase groceries and personal hygiene items to stock the food pantry. An estimated 20 students a day visit the Friends’ Closet for support.


Nicholas Ocheltree, Director of Integrated Communications