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NYC’s Hunger-Relief Organizations Come Together to Distribute Kosher For Passover Food to Thousands of Jewish Families in Need During Passover

Food Bank For New York City and Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty ensure that all will be included in traditional Passover Seder

NEW YORK, NY, March 26, 2010  — In preparation for Passover — which begins at sundown on March 29 — Food Bank For New York City, in partnership with the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, will provide thousands of pounds of Kosher for Passover food items to hundreds of nonprofit community food programs throughout the five boroughs, helping needy families of the Jewish faith. Food Bank procured more than one million pounds of fresh produce to supplement Met Council’s Kosher food packages and provided a tractor trailer and driver to assist the Council with food deliveries. An estimated 544,320 Jewish families   — 48 percent of the city’s Jewish households — are food insecure.

Items being distributed to hunger-relief programs in all five boroughs include Matzo, canned tuna, Gefilte fish, Matzo Ball soup mix, canned juices, and staples such as tomato sauce, jelly and mayonnaise.

Approximately 1.3 million New Yorkers rely on emergency food at soup kitchens and food pantries, including one in five children.  With unemployment in New York City hitting double-digits at 10.2 percent, more than double what it was at the start of the recession, more people are turning to Food Bank For New York City for the first time.

“This has been an especially challenging year.  More than 3.3 million New Yorkers are having difficulty affording food for themselves and their families. That’s an astounding number,” said Lucy Cabrera, Ph.D., President and CEO of Food Bank For New York City.  “In NYC, 93 percent of food pantries and soup kitchens are seeing an increase in the number of first-time visitors. Food Bank For New York City is pleased to partner with Met Council to assist Jewish families in need during this special time of year.”

“This year has been the largest distribution of Passover product by the Met Council and our distribution would not have been possible without the support of Food Bank For New York City,” said Benny Wechsler, Director of Met Council’s food pantry network.

About  Food Bank For New York City
Food Bank For New York City recognizes 27 years as the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs. Through its citywide network of approximately 1,000 food assistance programs, the Food Bank helps provide 300,000 free meals a day to New Yorkers in need. Food Bank further mobilizes its efforts through direct services, food stamp access, research and policy initiatives, nutrition education and free tax assistance for New York’s working poor. Every dollar donated to Food Bank helps provide five meals to New Yorkers in need. Learn how you can help at foodbanknyc.org.

About Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty
Met Council is one of New York’s largest human services agencies, providing 100,000 New Yorkers with critical services in their fight against poverty every year.   For 36 years, Met Council has been an advocate and defender for New Yorkers in need, and has raised awareness around the growing problem of Jewish poverty.  With services ranging from domestic violence counseling to kosher food pantries to career training, Met Council helps individuals find lasting solutions to poverty.  Learn more at www.metcouncil.org.

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