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Sometimes the simplest ideas make a big difference. Thanks to Matt Maloney’s suggestion distribution has become much more efficient at two of Wayside’s mobile food pantry drop-off sites.

Maloney, a Wayside transportation specialist, suggested that food pantry recipients be given reusable grocery bags with attached registration numbers. (To make the project possible, Whole Foods donated 300 reusable shopping bags.)

Wayside staffers now cross check the bag numbers against the registration list when recipients line up at pantry sites. In the past, language issues often bogged down the sign-in process. Now, instead of asking for names and household size each week, the information is quickly found by looking up the registration number. The bags also make it easier for people to transport their food to their apartments.

Additionally, Wayside is now using iPads to track the process much more efficiently.

First piloted at Wayside’s Sagamore Village food drop off, the process has proven to be a great time saver. The program has been expanded to the Riverton site.

“The process is so much better for everyone,” says Don Morrison, operations manager. “Matt’s idea was great, and it has made a big difference.”