Twelve hundred families will have food on the table for up to a week, thanks to the efforts of State Senator Joseph Addabbo, volunteers, Feed The Children (FTC) and AVON.
During a food distribution on Tuesday, October 19, three semi tractor-trailers full of food and supplies arrived in Forest Park’s George Seuffert Sr. Band Shell to help 1,200 families previously identified as most in need, after the Senator’s staff contacted emergency food programs in his district.
Collaborating local food pantries and soup kitchens, including the Ridgewood Older Adult Center and Services and Elohim Community Development Center in Richmond Hill, then distributed 1,200 vouchers prior to the distribution.
This was the latest stop on Feed The Children’s Americans Feeding Americans Caravan, which has helped more than 160,000 families across the country in cities that have been affected by the nation’s prolonged economic downturn. Feed The Children’s goal is to help at least 200,000 families with the caravan by the end of this year.
At Forest Park, Feed The Children representatives helped Addabbo, Dawn Puricelli, Head of Product Line Control AVON North America, dozens of volunteers, including P.S. 254 students, and Mr. Met to give out the boxes and greet the families.
“We can’t do this alone – there’s a growing need in our borough and in our district,” said Addabbo. “Since the harsh recession began, the meals served by food pantries and soup kitchens in Queens rose 106 percent between 2006 and 2009, an additional 14.3 million meals. Overall, some 87,500 Queens households were either unable to obtain enough food for their families or were uncertain about having enough food.”
Addabbo noted that those most in need of assistance are children, the working poor, seniors and veterans.
“This outreach to the local community doesn’t end today,” said Puricelli. “Sponsors like AVON will continue joining the FTC caravan as it travels to other towns and cities.
We gave a box of products to each family and something special for empowering women opening that box, to boost their self esteem. I call it a ‘Mom Box’ because there’s also something inside that will help women to earn income. It’s our way of caring for women. We’re happy to be a sponsor and we’re going to continue this effort.”