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Maspeth advocate hosts online fundraisers for Catering for the Homeless nonprofit

Photo courtesy of Crystal Wolfe

Catering for the Homeless (CFTH), a local nonprofit working to collect ready-made meals, fresh produce and non-perishable items to feed people experiencing homelessness and food insecurity, is in need of donations to continue their work.

For four years, CFTH, founded by Maspeth advocate Crystal Wolfe, has served more than 800,000 meals, 50,000 non-perishable food items, 50,000 toiletries, 20,000 clothing items and 20,000 socks throughout New York City, but mainly in Queens.

CFTH has more than 120 partners, including churches, food pantries, homeless shelters and other nonprofits. Since March, CFTH has helped restock more than 30 food pantries across Queens, thanks to some donations from community members and small grants. However, those funds are now gone, leaving Wolfe to make up for it with her own personal money.

“We desperately need donations in order to continue and expand our efforts,” Wolfe wrote.

Wolfe expects to serve a minimum of 30,000 meals per week in 2021. She also expects to procure at least 10,000 socks for the homeless, 150,000 non-perishable food items and hundreds of thousands of fresh produce.

To continue their efforts, CFTH is hosting an online fundraiser where donors can bid on one-of-a-kind celebrity items and vacation getaways, which ends on Dec. 18.

They also have an ongoing GoFundMe campaign to help feed individuals and families most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

CFTH will use part of the donations to develop their website so they can expand their program and provide even more meals to New Yorkers in need. Eventually, Wolfe hopes to grow the nonprofit to serve more people on a national scale.

Wolfe believes hunger can be solved by redistributing what is now considered food waste — New York state generates more than 250,000 tons of food waste and food scraps per year, according to the Department of Environmental Conservation. She’s been advocating for the New York City Department of Education, in particular, to get on board with her and encourage schools to distribute their excess food.

“There is food going to waste in every town in America that no one needs to go hungry,” Wolfe said. “Getting this food excess to those who need it can solve, or greatly reduce, this hunger crisis.”

For more information, visit their website at www.cateringforthehomeless.com.

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