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Neighbors facing challenges from food insecurity to loss of income and employment to receive portraits as keepsakes to preserve memories and uplift their connection to Food Bank For New York City


February 14, 2022 (New York, NY) – Today, Food Bank For New York City announced the launch of Portraits of Promise, a project to connect with individuals and families who frequently visit its Community Kitchen and Food Pantry in West Harlem beyond the food line by participating in professional holiday-themed photo sessions that result in photos they can take with them to display in their living spaces, helping them feel seen and celebrated.

For New Yorkers facing challenges from food insecurity to paying rent, capturing special moments and memories through individual and family portraits, which can often be costly, is not always a top priority. Camesha Grant, Food Bank’s Vice President of Community Connection and Outreach saw this need firsthand in her work at Food Bank and envisioned Portraits of Promise as a recurring initiative centered upon holidays and seasonal events. For Valentine’s Day this year, more than a dozen groups and individuals gathered in front of a bright pink backdrop to smile for portraits they can cherish for years to come.

“At Food Bank For New York City, it’s important for our neighbors to feel a strong sense of community, dignity, and hope when they visit our kitchen, especially around holidays and special occasions,” said Leslie Gordon, President and CEO of Food Bank For New York City. “Portraits of Promise recognizes that for many of our friends, families, and neighbors, having printed and digital portraits is often out of reach for many reasons, including the high costs associated with production. We want to take an often over-overlooked opportunity and make it more accessible.”

“The goal of Portraits of Promise is to provide individuals and families with more than nutritious food and groceries, it’s to help them preserve memories through photography with a keepsake portrait they can cherish for years,” said Dr. Camesha Grant, Vice President of Community Connection and Outreach. “For nearly 40 years, Food Bank For New York City has represented stability for millions of New Yorkers and we want to ensure that we are giving every person we serve moments to remember with dignity and respect.”

Food Bank For New York City will host portrait events around upcoming holidays and special events. The intention is that individuals and families will have uplifting memories for generations to come.

For more information, please visit

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About Food Bank For New York City

Since 1983, Food Bank For New York City has been the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end hunger throughout the five boroughs. Nearly one in five New Yorkers relies on Food Bank for food and other resources. Food Bank takes a strategic, multifaceted approach that provides meals and builds capacity in the neediest communities, while raising awareness and engagement among all New Yorkers. Through its network of more than 1,000 charities and schools citywide, Food Bank provided more than 80 million free meals last year for New Yorkers in need. Food Bank For New York City’s income support services, including food stamps (also known as SNAP) and free tax assistance for the working poor, put nearly $36 million each year into the pockets of New Yorkers, helping them to afford food and achieve greater dignity and independence. Food Bank’s nutrition education programs and services empower more than 50,000 children, teens and adults to sustain a healthy diet and active lifestyle on a limited budget. Working toward long-term solutions to food poverty, Food Bank develops policy and conducts research to inform community and government efforts. To learn more about how you can help, please visit Follow us on Facebook (FoodBank4NYC), Twitter (@FoodBank4NYC) and Instagram (@FoodBank4NYC).


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