Hunger Is Not a Disease

Why I work in a pantry…even after all these years.

RT 28 at Boiceville
“This is perfect weather for a flood” she said casually. “It’s good to see the county out cleaning the ditches by the roads. We need to be ready.”
As I write this post, my mind travels back in time to the 1st pantry day after both Hurricane Irene and Super Storm Sandy. I managed a pantry in Woodstock, NY then. What pantry days they were! People came in looking for anything and everything they could find. They were upset, scared, coping with loss. Many had lost everything – car, house, job. They didn’t know where to turn.

Sadly, neither did I. As they filed in the pantry room, they asked questions that I couldn’t answer. So…I referred them to Family of Woodstock down the street. I simply didn’t know what else to do.

So, now I fast forward to the present where I manage a pantry in Boiceville, NY. Residents here are still recovering from Irene and Sandy. At this pantry, I see some of the same people I saw in Woodstock. Recovery is slow.

Reservoir Food Pantry volunteers work to assure that quality food is available for the many individuals and families in Ulster County. They struggle with food insecurity, homelessness, and underemployment. About 40% of our clients are transportation challenged and we deliver food to them.

Hunger comes in several categories in our area:
elderly poor
employed poor
ill poor
infant poor
generational poor
persistent poor
resource poor
situational poor
struggling poor

Regularly, without even a second thought, volunteers at our pantry located in the Ashokan Reservoir area of Upstate New York, work hand-in-glove with UlsterCorp volunteers, Rondout Valley Growers’ Association. Together, they make an an ongoing effort to provide enough food for those struggling daily with hunger.

Now, in 2015, area pantries are working to be a cohesive group with food storage and safety procedures known by everyone. We know, even if no one else does, how much the area hungry and homeless need the food. Hunger alleviation cannot be effectively carried out in a vacuum.

Our success depends on long term commitment and collaboration. We need to be able to escalate services when needed. Volunteers in our group are here for the time and effort necessary to fight hunger and homelessness in our area.

www.ulstercorps.org
www.familyofwoodstockinc.org
www.goodmorningwoodstock.com
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Peace and food for all.

Thurman Greco

  1. 7/6/2015 | 2:15 pm Permalink

    What a great cause. Food is a basic need but many are going without.

    I feel it is important to provide nice food, that you and I like to eat. We should never feel that because people have little, we should give them any old thing.

    • 7/6/2015 | 3:39 pm Permalink

      Thanks Phoenicia for your lovely comment! It’s nice to hear from you and it’s even nicer to know that you honor feeding the hungry!
      Thurman