In response to COVID-19, five organizations have joined forces to mobilize an emergency response and collaborative effort to address food insecurity for Newark Seniors and Families.
Since April 2nd, The Emergency Response Food Distribution Effort has provided over 87,000 pounds of fresh produce to over 1500 unduplicated seniors and 200 Newark Families.
Greater Newark Conservancy, CareSparc Consulting, Inc., Table to Table, Grotta Fund for Senior Care, and Lincoln Park Coast Cultural District source and deliver food for seniors living in 7 senior buildings and families throughout the City of Newark weekly.
According to Table to Table, nearly 25% of senior adults live in households with incomes below 200% of the federal poverty level. Newark was home to more than 72,000 children in 2016. 18% live in extreme poverty, compared to 7% of NJ children overall.
Research on food insecurity conducted by Feeding America states vulnerable populations have characteristics which place them at a higher risk for severe illness associated with COVID-19. Many Seniors regularly face challenges accessing food due to mobility and transportation limitations and with social distancing measures in place, these challenges are likely to be heightened. Initial response to the spread of the outbreak has included panic buying to stock up on food staples and other supplies, including toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and cleaning supplies. Low-Income individuals are disadvantaged in such an environment: many struggle to afford what they need for the immediate future (Feeding America).
The nutritious food is primarily fresh produce and other food items as well. The Emergency Response Food Distribution Effort is managed and coordinated by CareSparc Consulting, Inc., who through working alongside Table to Table has been providing nutritious food to these same senior buildings in Newark since August 2019. CareSparc also managed the Free Pop-Up Senior Fresh Produce Market, which led to the Covid-19 Emergency Food Distribution Effort.
NJ.com Article Featuring one of the collaborative partners Rutgers New Jersey Medical School COVID- Team: https://www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/04/future-docs-cant-treat-coronavirus-patients-so-theyre-helping-seniors-out-instead.html?fbclid=IwAR1QZb7847sjIQELzROPjCMCw1g01sCB13iYIquSJP2XdBvADlYVBymrDig
Citation: The Impact of Coronavirus on Food Insecurity. (2020 30). Retrieved 3, 2020, from https://www.feedingamerica.org/sites/default/files/2020-04/Brief_Impact of Covid on Food Insecurity 4.22 (002).pdf