Before the Covid-19 pandemic, 1 in 10 Sullivan County residents struggled with food insecurity, with 1 in 5 children in a household receiving SNAP benefits to ensure their next meal.
We have no idea what those numbers are today. Early estimates indicate a 40-60% increase since the coronavirus pandemic began. With Sullivan Allies Leading Together (SALT), local farm and food producers, and a multitude of donors, Cornell Cooperative Extension Sullivan County (CCESC)’s Sullivan Fresh Market on the Move has temporarily transitioned to a Mobile Food Pantry to meet increased community need for fresh, healthy, local foods.
In addition, low-cost food boxes will be available for purchase with SNAP benefits and Produce Prescription Rx coupons at CCESC’s Sullivan Fresh Farmers’ Markets this summer. This new program is a pilot project of CCESC, Catskills Regional Medical Center, Sullivan Renaissance, and the Sullivan County Department of Public Health Services.
There is enough demand to expand these efforts in perpetuity, even after this public health crisis. To do so, we need another truck, two drivers, and assurance of product. To that end, we are reopening last year’s Sullivan Fresh campaign with a new fundraising target of $65,000, along with our work on several grant opportunities.
Please consider a contribution to help expand Sullivan Fresh initiatives.