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Holiday Food Giveaways Needed This Year More Than Ever, As Pandemic Food Insecurity Persists



NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A new report released Monday shows just how many families have been struggling to put food on the table during the pandemic, especially in the Bronx.

CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis visited the borough to see what’s being done to help those in need this Thanksgiving.

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Tom Capers joined the line wrapped around the parking lot of the Northeast Bronx YMCA, among residents eager to take home food.

“Without this, some of the families here wouldn’t have anything on their plate to eat,” he told DeAngelis. “Daddy looks like a hero, he brought a bird home.”

The holiday food donation extravaganza was a joint effort with City Harvest, Fresh Direct, Bronx native Slick Rick and elected officials.


“I think we’ve got 800 turkeys, so hopefully we can touch each one of those families with a turkey,” Fresh Direct Managing Director Dave Bass said.

“It’s a way for us to say thank you to the community. But now more so than ever, it’s needed, because we know that people during the pandemic lost their jobs, or food has been expensive and hard to get to,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.

People also picked up food at another giveaway at the West Side Campaign Against Hunger on the Upper West Side.

“We really need this,” resident Kamil Mabry said.

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“This holiday season, we’re seeing unprecedented levels of need in the community, and we’re set to give out over 7,000 turkeys and holiday meals during the month of November,” said organizer Alyson Rosenthal.

Web Extra: Read Hunger Free America report (pdf)


At this event, Hunger Free America unveiled a new report, which found in April 2020 more than six million New Yorkers didn’t have enough to eat. The nonprofit said thanks to federal aid, that number dropped 56% by this past September.

“Even with the slight recovery from COVID, there are nearly three million people statewide in New York — 2.75 million people in New Yorker — who live in homes that can’t afford enough food,” CEO Joel Berg said.

That report found from 2018 to 2020, one in four Bronx residents experienced food insecurity and many say the need is still there, which is why events like these are so important.

The report details recommendations at the federal, state and city levels to address the ongoing crisis.


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CBS2’s Jenna DeAngelis will have more on this story coming up on CBS2 News At 5.


Source: CBS

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