Bronx – 12-15-2020 (PRDistribution.com) — Bronx, New York: The Think Tank at The Thinkubator under the leadership of Dr. Lessie Branch released a policy brief on holiday food insecurity in the Bronx. The report explores the devastating impact COVID-19 has on the Bronx and on hunger. The report amplifies other reports that coin the Bronx as the new face of hunger. It released data from The Thinkubator on food insecurity during the holiday from nearly 100 Bronx residents representing all zip codes in the borough. The report finds the following:
- 84% of respondents will spend the Holidays at home;
- Nearly 50% of respondents stated that they do not know where they would find financial resources to pay for holiday meal;
- 39% stated that items such as turkeys and side food items will be helpful during the holiday time;
- 52% of the respondents would like additional meals from programs such as World Central Kitchen (WCK) Direct and/or other programs that deliver prepared meals to residents such as NYC’s GetFood program.
COVID-19 has certainly exacerbated the number of food insecure households and policy intervention is needed immediately. “Food insecurity will be a defining issue of our time. “We must do everything we can to eradicate food insecurity in the Bronx, NYC, Nationally, and Worldwide” said Dr. Edward Summers, CEO and President of The Thinkubator. The Thinkubator has worked collaboratively with The Bronx Community Foundation, The Bronx Community Relief Efforts, HERE to HERE, World Central Kitchen (WCK), RAP4BRONX, BronxWorks, NY Common Pantry, The Prodigal Center, the Mott Haven Fridge, and other community-based organizations to provide meals and financial resources to support local pantries and food distribution centers. These activities have yielded the delivery of more than 2 million meals and hundreds of grocery bags and fresh produce to households in the Bronx. “The strength and dedication of our organization have allowed us not only to report out on these inequities we are seeing impact Bronx society, but address them” stated Julian Joyner, Lead Facilitator and Manager of Youth Voice, The Thinkubator.
The Think Tank at The Thinkubator puts forth four policy prescriptions that must be examined as local governments consider food insecurity relief: 1) Continue to facilitate safety precautions for staff and patrons at food distribution locations. 2) Identify successful food outreach practices for K-12 students. 3) Increase benefit resources and subsequent outreach campaigns. 4) Implement innovative food delivery for low-income, elderly populations. Dr. Lessie Branch, Director of The Think Tank states “The Brink that the Bronx has been ushered to is at the intersection of policy that has ignored the structural barriers and the shift of resources away from those most disparately impacted by structural barriers.” The community must do its best to intervene and support those within the community when the government fails to do so.
The Thinkubator has recently worked with ReThink Food through its Thinkubator Solves program (Bronx youth paid student consultancy) on crafting youth-driven solutions to combating food insecurity in the Bronx and will host a Solution Day on Wednesday. December 16 at 4:30 on Zoom, where youth will make recommendations on how to deal with the challenges the Bronx is experiencing. On Thursday, December 17 at 5:00 p.m. another cohort of youth will focus on creating “Third” space for youth public consumption on Zoom. Additionally, The Thinkubator will host a Holiday Cheer and Food Demo on Friday. December 18 at 4:00 p.m. on Zoom for the public. Donations will support The Thinkubator’s programming and food insecurity work. At the event, raffle prizes will be given to attendees. For more information visit: www.thethinkubator.org/events.
“Food Insecurity will be a defining issue of our time. We must do everything we can to eradicate food insecurity in the Bronx, NYC, Nationally, and Worldwide.” – Dr. Edward Summers
“The Bronx continues to lead in the number of food insecure individuals and families. Public intervention must address this critical problem.”
More about The Think Tank at The Thinkubator:
The Think Tank at The Thinkubator, launched by Dr. Lessie Branch, Associate Professor of Business at Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY), serves as a hub for rigorous academic, scholarly, and professional research that supports the documentation and evaluation of The Thinkubator activities, seeks to understand The Bronx as a contested, complex urban form, and addresses narratives of marginalized – Black, Brown, Female, and low-income communities. The Think Tank conducts research and analysis, provides youth with a platform to conduct and produce research, and produces policy briefs and reports for public discourse.
More about The Thinkubator
The Thinkubator exists to train, educate, and connect Bronx youth to work-based learning experiences, employment, and educational opportunities. Youth are connected to businesses, nonprofits, elected officials, and government to partake in our US democracy and impact change. We seek to prepare diverse, low-income youth from the Bronx to succeed in the workplace and the world. The Thinkubator aspires to a world where young people from the Bronx are trained, educated, and powered to bring their voice to business, organizational, societal, and world challenges.
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