A Toni’s Kitchen Guest Story: “Terry”

(NOTE: This is part of a series of stories focusing on how we work to improve the lives of our guests at Toni's Kitchen.)

When "Terry," (not her real name) a local resident, reached out to Toni's Kitchen for some help with groceries, she did not expect the holistic support she would experience. Terry has been a guest of Toni's Kitchen since September 2022 when she first came to Choice Pantry. Terry lives by herself in Montclair, has several chronic health issues, is unable to work and receives Social Security disability income. In addition to Choice Pantry, She began participating in a number of programs at Toni's Kitchen, including the Food Health Hope (FHH) program focused on controlling one's weight, blood pressure and glucose levels, mobile dental services and educational and supportive counseling. Terry says that she is eating healthier now thanks to the special produce and dry goods as well as healthy recipes she receives through the FHH program. She has positively reduced her values related to diabetes and hypertension.

Terry shared that she has found the counselor at Toni's engaging, supportive and easy to talk to. Terry recently was moved off a months-long waitlist for counseling with the mental health practitioner where she receives her medical care. But because she has had such a good experience with counseling at Toni's, she decided to continue her counseling at Toni's instead. Terry is looking forward to 2024, feeling healthier and supported through her connection with Toni's Kitchen.