The Delavan Food Pantry was founded in 1980 by Harold Johnson and Bob Drefs. Per Harold Johnson (who served as the first director), “The pantry is intended to supplement family nutrition and not be a substitute for it. Most of the people who use the program are ‘working poor.’ They work but they don’t make enough to make ends meet” (Delavan Enterprise article 12/14/1994).
After Harold’s passing in January 2001, Bob Drefs assumed the duties of director. At that time, Harold’s friends wished to honor his long-time dedication and service to the community. On August 5, 2001, the pantry was officially renamed the Harold Johnson Delavan Food Pantry.
In April 2015, Terry Bailey was asked to assume the duties of pantry director so Bob could retire after his many years of service. Terry is the daughter of Harold Johnson and has been a pantry volunteer since September 2013.
From its inception, the food pantry has been located in the basement of St. Andrew Church at the corner of 7th Street and Walworth Avenue. It was temporarily moved from January 2017 until September 2018 while the basement received a much needed renovation. By God’s grace, money was bequeathed or donated by friends and members of the Johnson family, specifically to fund the entire pantry renovation. It is now a clean, safe, bright and spacious location for clients to shop for their groceries.