Do you believe it’s wrong that there’s enough food in the world that no one needs to be going hungry, but a lot of it is wasted? As the Founder and President of Catering for the Homeless, Inc., I’m working day and night to do something about that, and it’s making a difference.
Over 100,000 meals have now been provided by this program, and at least 1,500 families in Queens are served each week, in addition to the homeless on the streets, in shelters, and on the subways. We’ve also provided 30,000 toiletries, 16,200 clothing items, 15,000 non-perishable food items, and 8,000 socks. My goal is to provide at least half a million meals by the end of 2020, and to get the web development and phone app I need to expand this program by July.
When the Coronavirus struck, and the orders were issued for businesses to shut down, and for people to stay safe by staying home, I sprang into action. I started a food and toiletry drive for this crisis that has raised tens of thousands of items, and I began to work with food pantries more than I have in the past, to bring them non-perishable food that has provided 15,000 meals on a weekly basis. During this Crisis, I’ve also made more home deliveries to families who were unable to get to a food pantry.
The vision of Catering for the Homeless has always been the same: to utilize the quality, untouched, unopened, health-compliant food that would otherwise go to waste every day of the year, in every neighborhood in NYC. This program has thus far been dependent upon one person to carry it out, but with the web development of a log in and phone app, if I pass away or have to move out-of-state, I can continue to feed people here in NYC, and all over the country, no matter where I am. I always envisioned that this program would be self-sustaining, otherwise it will die with me. This would be such a waste—when it could easily continue to grow every year with or without me, once it’s self-sustaining.
With the web development, CFTH will easily become the largest provider of food in the nation, providing millions of meals on a weekly basis. One catering company like the Javits Center can provide a minimum of 50,000 meals a year with their untouched food that went to waste in the past. Add to that Citi Field, the Rockefeller Center, and the schools of New York, and this program could truly end hunger in America. Do you really want permanent solutions? CFTH is the permanent solution to end hunger.
CFTH was always intended to be a network of grocery stores like Key Foods, restaurants like O’Neill’s, schools like NYU, and catering companies like Madison Square Gardens, who have tons of good food going to waste, and connecting them to churches, nonprofits, soup kitchens, and food pantries who can collect and distribute this food to those who need it in their own ways. CFTH has 115 partners in our network so far. My goal is to have thousands.
With all that we’ve accomplished, we could do so more with more support of funding, donations, volunteers, and more partners. I know that there will come a day very soon when my organization provides more meals than Feeding America and City Harvest. CFTH is already providing more meals and legislation than the Coalition for the Homeless, all of which have full staffs, volunteers, and receive millions of dollars in funding.
This log in program will be the next step for Catering for the Homeless. It will cost up to $10,000 to hire someone to do this work. Please consider contributing to this important work by donating directly through the website, donating food, clothing, or toiletries, or volunteering to make deliveries of food. I hope that any restaurants, catering companies, schools, or groceries stores with food excess they have thrown away in the past, will kindly consider visiting our website at www.cateringforthehomeless.com, and joining this program, so that your food can go to the over 2 million New Yorkers who are going hungry on a regular basis. After this COVID-19 Crisis is all said and done, the need will even be greater. “Waste not, want not,” and Catering for the Homeless is the solution.
In response to the Coronavirus Pandemic, Catering for the Homeless, Inc. has decided to run a food and toiletry crisis relief drive for anyone in need for the duration of this emergency. I welcome the participation of any generous organization or individual who kindly wants to contribute to stemming the repercussions of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Tens of thousands of items are being raised and distributed.
Meals are being prepared and brought to the home-bound elderly and disabled. Food, socks, and toiletries are being given to the homeless on the streets, parks, and subways. Catering for the Homeless is also donating non-perishable food items to food pantries that are staying open serving food to thousands of families throughout Queens.
You may text or call 332-202-7813, or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for a pickup or drop off of items to a location in Maspeth. For anyone who wants to contribute to this drive, but do not want to have items picked up at their home or does not have the ability to drop them off, you may donate through the website at www.cateringforthehomeless.com. You may stipulate the neighborhood you want your items to be donated to. Please join me in making a difference.
Examples of toiletries needed are: socks, hand sanitizer, toothpaste, toothbrushes, feminine products, diapers, lotion, sunscreen, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, toilet paper, paper towels, and soap. Examples of non-perishable food items needed: peanut butter, jelly/jam, rice, pasta, beans, canned soups, canned vegetables, coffee, tea, juices, cereal, crackers, and any non-perishable food items.
By giving back to those in need where and when possible, community members will bring hope and light to this dark time in our world. Let us continue to live life to the fullest, through the works of service which reveal our character, and our hearts. Thank you to everyone who is willing to help those in need.