Queens organization raises $350,000 to help citywide food bank expand further into the borough

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A Queens-based organization is working with Food Bank For New York City to help feed the borough’s hungry people.

A recent report from Food Bank showed that the city’s emergency food network has surged, with 91% of food pantries and soup kitchens reporting an increase in first-time visitors. The Francine A. LeFrak Foundation will be providing $350,000 in funding to expand the capacity of food pantries and soup kitchens serving high-need communities in Queens.

The Foundation has donated $250,000 since the start of the COVID pandemic, and thanks to the Foundation’s outreach to its supporters, network, and donors, an additional $100,000 of funding was raised. The new funding will allow 14 local food pantries and soup kitchens in Queens increase their food supply and build infrastructure like enhanced refrigeration and storage. Additionally, the funding will go towards creating a new Community Response Partner in Queens: Elmcor Youth & Adult Activities, located in Elmhurst/Corona – one of the poorest and most diverse areas of New York City, and hit hardest by the COVID-19 outbreak. 

“As New York begins to open up, we can’t turn our backs to those who are still hungry,” Francine A. LeFrak, President of the Francine A. LeFrak Foundation said. “Providing refrigeration and the ability to store food to meet the dire needs at 14 local food pantries is an honor and a privilege.”

The Foundation provided meals for food pantries and soup kitchens throughout Queens earlier this summer and sponsored a series of mobile food pantries at LeFrak City and the Rego Park Library, where they distributed nearly 2,000,000 meals. To date, the Foundation has helped serve 480,000 Queens residents.

Since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, Food Bank has distributed over 35 million meals across the city, an increase of 20 percent in overall food distribution compared to the same period last year.

“Thank you to the Francine A. LeFrak Foundation for their continued support during this difficult time. This funding will help to build capacity in high-need communities at a time when fortifying the city’s emergency food network is critical,” said Leslie Gordon, President and CEO of Food Bank For New York City. “As heightened food insecurity continues to plague our city, we are grateful for their support and for the generosity of all of our partners who are helping to ensure New Yorkers have food on their tables.”

For more information or to donate, visit www.foodbanknyc.org/LeFrak.

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