A food pantry at an Oklahoma university is already making a major impact on nearby families.

Earlier this year, Langston University partnered with the Town of Langston City and the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to create a university-community food pantry.

Organizers say they were looking for ways to help students and serve the community as a whole.

“We wanted to meet the need,” said the Langston University Dean of Students Joshua Busby. “We had an opportunity to partner with the town, and its reach has far exceeded our expectations.”

The food pantry serves all of the surrounding communities including Langston, Coyle, Meridian and Langston University.

In the three months since it opened, the pantry has served more than 550 individuals.

Officials say the community has been dealing with inadequate resources, a decline in federal and state funding assistance, limited grant opportunities, transportation barriers, and a lack of nutritional programs for children.

The food pantry is open for distribution from Dec. 18 through Dec. 20, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.