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Food pantry hits milestone of 1 million pounds of food distributed to Lower East Side NYCHA families

LES Food Pantry.jpeg
Posted at 5:42 PM, Aug 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-20 18:26:55-04

LOWER EAST SIDE, Manhattan — Two big victories for a lower east side NYCHA development.

Community groups hit a milestone, giving one million pounds of fresh produce and groceries to families and now one of the food pantries will expand its work and feed more families, thanks to a new NYCHA community center.

Norfolk Street on the lower east side was converted into a free farmers' market for NYCHA residents. The event was called Summer Pantry Healthfest.

Eric Diaz, the executive director of Vision Urbana, a non-profit organization that has helped deliver thousands of meals to NYCHA families during the pandemic, organized the event.

“You don’t have to travel far and wide to get food and we speak your language,” said Diaz.

Diaz says inside every box is more than just fresh food, there's hope. His groups teamed up with another non-profit called UA3, and together they have given away a million pounds of food since March.

Councilmember Margaret Chin and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer noticed their hard work, and secured $700,000 to build a new NYCHA community center that will soon move the feeding mission from the sidewalk to a permanent indoor facility.

A NYCHA spokesperson says “NYCHA is currently in the design phase for renovation of the Seward Park Extension Community Center. The renovation was made possible through funding secured by Councilmember Chin and we look forward to working with the Councilmember as well as Resident Leadership to shape this exciting project.”

If you would like to volunteer or contribute to the food distribution efforts visit their website or donate to their PayPal.