Retired teacher supports Food Pantry with SIMPLE GESTURES

Apr 12, 2023 | Around Ottawa County | 0 comments

Organizer Kathy Jo Schweitzer, left, donates several SIMPLE GESTURES contributions to Ann Heckerd during the recent open house at St. Vincent de Paul’s new food pantry in Port Clinton.

Kathy Jo Schweitzer arrived in Port Clinton 52 years ago to begin teaching English at Port Clinton High School. Later, joining the Kiwanis Club of Port Clinton, she learned about its association with her school’s Key Club students.

Becoming the school’s Key Club advisor, Schweitzer created many community-centered opportunities for its members. It was during those years the students would learn the importance of giving, and they quickly experienced how easy it was to help others.

Their first project was to assist the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry in Port Clinton, then located in the basement of Immaculate Conception School. As greeters, they bagged and carried groceries to the recipients’ cars.

Now retired, Schweitzer has continued this mission, which started in 2015, by creating SIMPLE GESTURES. This program, with more than 90 contributors, has received and already made 123 distributions of over 38,000 food, household and family items to schools, county organizations and individuals of all ages.

SIMPLE GESTURES has over the years donated 3,439 food and household items to St. Vincent de Paul in support of its mission and will continue in the future. For information on SIMPLE GESTURES and how to get involved, email

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