Each month, we’ll be sharing stories of our Grubhub Community Relief Fund beneficiaries, highlighting how they are using their grants to positively impact their communities. This month, we’re spotlighting Food Bank For New York City, which has been working to end food poverty in the five boroughs for over 36 years.
Grubhub + Food Bank For New York City
Our support is used to purchase food that’s distributed across the five boroughs the Food Bank for New York City (Food Bank) supports. In September and to honor Hunger Action Month, Seamless (a New York-based takeout marketplace, part of the Grubhub portfolio of brands) and the Food Bank partnered to host five pop up food distribution centers at iconic locations in each borough: The Barclays Center, Yankee Stadium, Lincoln Center, Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden and The New York Hall of Science. Together, we were able to distribute more than 100,000 meals to nearly 11,500 New Yorkers in need.
How it all Started
The Food Bank was founded in 1983 by leaders of the city’s pioneering soup kitchens and food pantries. Today, the Food Bank is the city’s largest hunger-relief organization whose multifaceted approach is centered on helping low-income New Yorkers overcome their circumstances and achieve greater independence. Over the last 36 years, the Food Bank has provided more than one billion meals for food insecure New Yorkers, and has organized food, information, and support for community survival, empowerment and dignity.
Food Bank for New York City’s Work Today
Since the start of the pandemic, Food Bank has distributed more than 50 million meals to New Yorkers in need. The city’s “new normal” has shuttered businesses and led to lost wages and closed schools, causing thousands more New Yorkers to face hunger. Amid this new reality, the number of people turning to Food Bank’s emergency food network has increased by 50%. Additionally, approximately 40% of food pantries and soup kitchens in all five boroughs have closed since the onset of the pandemic, so the organization has found new ways to support the community.
One of the ways they are doing this is by ramping up operations to keep meals flowing where they’re needed most. They also established Community Response Partners across the city to serve as food and resource “hubs” within the hardest-hit communities. The Food Bank has also organized pop-up distribution sites to provide emergency food, fresh produce, and household supplies for vulnerable families. Residents like Gloria Robinson shared how the Food Bank for New York City has helped them feed their families. Check out her story here.