AdkAction, in partnership with the Hub on the Hill in Essex, New York, launched an Emergency Food Packages (EFP) Project to assist local families facing food insecurity due to the COVID 19 crisis. Each EFP contains about one week’s worth of fresh food and healthy prepared meals delivered directly to a family. The food is purchased from local farms and prepared using paid, local labor. Through the new EFP Project, the two organizations aim to provide 100 boxes of free, fresh, healthy food for each of the next 10 weeks. A total of 1,000 packages, representing 15,000 meals will be created and delivered to the doorsteps of households in need.
Each Emergency Food Package contains eggs, bread, apples, healthy snacks, yogurt, greens, granola, soup, and two large trays of frozen entrees. The food in the box is being purchased from local farms and prepared and delivered using paid, local labor at the Hub on the Hill. A small pilot of 12 boxes went out last week, and one of the recipients had this to say, “I’ve never been in a position where I’ve needed help like this so it’s not easy but this is a huge relief.”
Individuals and families in need are being screened and selected by the Joint Council for Economic Opportunity (JCEO), Adirondack Community Action Program (ACAP), and Community Connections.
Each EFP costs $55 to produce and deliver but will be provided free of charge to families in need. The Adirondack Foundation’s Special and Urgent Needs Fund provided start-up funding for the EFP Project. The initial funding was used to reinforce staffing at The Hub on the Hill and buy the packaging and food for the pilot phase of the project.
AdkAction has launched a fundraising campaign calling upon its 400+ members and board of directors, as well as project partners and the general public to pitch in. Over $47,000 has been raised in the first week of the campaign, enough to already support the first 850 EFPs. The fundraising goal is to raise $55,000 to support the creation and home delivery of the 1,000 EFPs over the next 10 weeks. For $55, anyone who wants to help can donate one Emergency Food Package. If the fundraising goal is exceeded, AdkAction and The Hub on the Hill will use additional funds to expand the program and provide more EFPs to families in need. Visit https://emergencyfoodpackages.
Brittany Christenson, Executive Director of AdkAction, stated, “We felt we had to alter course and do something significant to help out so many families in need. We have been addressing food insecurity since 2017 with our Farmacy Project, so this new effort stems from that work and recognizes the immense new barriers to food access that COVID-19 presents.”
The Emergency Food Package project builds on the local food aggregation and distribution infrastructure already in place at the Hub on the Hill. “Within the context of our current pandemic, the Hub is piloting a program to offer door-to-door delivery service of local goods with our new Mobile Market and safely deliver Emergency Food Packages,” said Jori Wekin, Director of The Hub on the Hill. “We’re fortunate to be in a position to help. The Hub has been focused on strengthening food systems infrastructure throughout the region for the last 5 years and watching it pay off in a time of need is truly rewarding. In a moment full of so much uncertainty, we’re able to channel our energy and capacity in a meaningful way, and for that we’re grateful.”
AdkAction staff time, software, and other resources are being donated to the EFP Project to ensure that 100% of donations received are spent on the food from local farmers, and also for fair wages for the staff at the Hub on the Hill who are making and delivering the Emergency Food Packages.
To donate to this project, visit: https://emergencyfoodpackages.funraise.org/