Friday, November 18, 2022

Feel Good Friday - City Harvest

Thanksgiving is next week and I’ve got food and family on my mind. That’s why I want to spend today’s Feel Good Friday talking about an organization dedicated to feeding hungry New Yorkers, City Harvest.

Founded in 1982, the mission of City Harvest is “to end hunger in communities throughout New York City.” They do this through food rescue and distribution, education, and other innovative solutions. This one-minute video gives a great overview.

Before we talk about the work, let’s talk about hunger in New York City. According to statistics on the City Harvest website, 1.5 million New Yorkers are struggling to feed themselves right now, including one in four children. Food insecurity has surged 36% since the beginning of the pandemic. 

This is where City Harvest comes in. Every day they have a fleet of 26 refrigerated trucks on the road, rescuing 300,000 pounds of nutritious food from donors such as farms, restaurants, grocers, and manufacturers. This food is then delivered to hundreds of soup kitchens, food pantries and other community partners in all five boroughs across New York City. To date, City Harvest has rescued and delivered more than 1 billion pounds of free food!

Nutrition education programs are focused on teaching people how to prepare delicious, nutritious meals and shop for healthy foods on a budget. While in-person workshops are still on hold, you can sign up for a virtual class or access recipes and video tutorials here.

Additional programs include: Mobile Markets, where community members gather in farmer’s market settings to receive fresh produce and participate in cooking demonstrations; Healthy Retail, which helps corner stores increase fruit and vegetable sales; and Plentiful, a mobile app available in nine languages that people use to locate food pantries near them and make reservations to pick up food without waiting in lines.

If you like what City Harvest is doing to feed New Yorkers, help them out by supporting their work. If you live in New York City you can volunteer your time. The rest of us can make a donation and amplify their message on social media. Like the City Harvest Facebook page and follow them on Twitter @CityHarvest (while it still exists) and Instagram @cityharvestnyc. #WeAreCityHarvest 

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