Longstanding Bed-Stuy food pantry struggling to keep up with demand amid lack of funding

Dr. Melony Samuels says that the pantry distributes food to an average of 14,000 families citywide every week.

Shakti Denis and Adolfo Carrion

Mar 1, 2024, 11:02 PM

Updated 48 days ago

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A food pantry in Bed-Stuy that has served the community for years is now in jeopardy of shutting down as it struggles to keep up with increased demand and a lack of funds.
The demand for food skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the needs are still at an all-time high four years later.
Dr. Melony Samuels, who heads the nonprofit Campaign Against Hunger that runs the pantry, says that they distribute food to an average of 14,000 families citywide every week.
“Even though many New Yorkers have gone back to work, we still face a migrant crisis and, believe it or not, they’re knocking at our doors,” said Samuels. “The cost of food is ridiculous. When you’re in a space where families tell you they cannot afford food… even though they have a pretty good job, they still can’t afford food.”
Samuels says that half of corporate donors and over 50% of private donors are not as present as before or have been lost entirely – meaning they’re now struggling to keep food on the shelves, especially after the holidays.


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