As of today, 100 boxes of food purchased from local farms have been sent free of charge to family homes deemed to be facing food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic in the Clinton, Essex and Franklin regions.
Two local organizations work together to feed these people, with help from donors. AdkAction, based in Saranac Lake, and Hub on the Hill, based in Essex, partnered two and a half weeks ago to start planning and designing a new Emergency Food Package program.
Contents vary, but the AdkAction website says typical boxes will include frozen lunches and dinners, a dozen eggs, a slice of bread, yogurt, soup, vegetables, apples, and healthy snacks – all locally produced.
Today’s delivery is the first of many. This shipment is planned to continue every week for the next 10 weeks. That’s a total of 1,000 packages intended to cover 15,000 meals.
Group too “Working out the details to also serve Hamilton County,” according to AdkAction Executive Director Brittany Christenson.
People who need food are filtered and selected by the Joint Board for Economic Opportunities (518-483-7022 in Malone, Franklin County), the Adirondack Community Action Program (518-873-3207 in Elizabethtown, Essex County) and Community Connections from Franklin County (518-521-3507 in Malone).
For such large businesses, it is important that small pilots are done first. After sending out a 12-box trial, the program received a large amount of positive feedback.
“That’s very positive,” Christenson said. “People really value the quality and freshness of food.
“Everyone likes yogurt and granola, (and) everyone likes trays of food and soup that have been prepared.”
To support this program, AdkAction launched a fundraising campaign which, to date, has raised more than $ 53,000 towards its goal of $ 55,000. The appeal asks donors to donate $ 55 to pay for an Emergency Food Package, with 100% of the donation going to buy food and pay a fair staff wage for preparing and sending it.
“Food is very emotional for people, and we all want our neighbors to be healthy and have enough food to feed their families,” Christenson said. “I think $ 55, to know that you feed someone in your community for a full week, it feels great to be able to help that way.”
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