Going Hungry in the Big Apple

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Áine Duggan, vice president of Government Relations, Policy & Research at the Food Bank For New York City, discusses the new report "Hunger Safety Net 2007" which shows that more New Yorkers are in need of food assistance, plus how the pending farm bill will affect food aid to the poor.


Áine Duggan

Comments [10]


It's a pride and honor to "FINALLY" have such a orginazation in our community. Masbia serves as a HOME AWAY FROM HOME for many people and everyone is served in the most prestigious way!!!

I commend the originators of this project.

Oct. 25 2007 12:56 PM
Tobi from Brooklyn

I actually see the goings on in Masbia on a daily basis. The executive director happens to be someone I know very well, he is my husband. I am so proud of him. He will not stop until he feels that he did everything in his power to help people. His goal is to make our city hunger free. There are those who are embarrassed to go to Masbia, so he would invite them to our home, providing for their every need, beyond feeding them food.

He always says that America has enough wealth for the NASA space program, for the war in Iraq, there is definitely money to be found to open a kitchen in every zip code. I am confident that he will get there one day!

Oct. 24 2007 08:57 AM
commentator from brooklyn nyc

The Masbia facility in Boro Park (Brooklyn) is the noblest form of soup kitchen. No one is turned away, no one is asked any questions other than food preferences. Young, old, all are welcomed. Set amongst Orthodox Jews, Masbia is the the ideal that every meal give-away program is to be measured by. Members of New York's legislature have been there and participated in the serving of the food, feeling ennobled by their experience. Masbia, as a neighborhood effort, is the personification of charity begins close to home.

Oct. 23 2007 11:03 PM
judy from bklyn ny 11219

Working in a bakery and often giving away yesturday's bread and cake for the hungry seniors and young adults. I can atest to how many hungry people roam the streets. Masbia is the only place in our area that will serve a full healthy meal to mothers and children when they feel hungry and in need. I always wanted to Command them. If anyone willing to help or to visit Masbia the soup kitchen to see what I have seen for themself.Fell free to visit them at 4114 14th Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11219

Oct. 23 2007 05:07 PM

FoodBank is phenomenal. They work hard and get the food together for many soup kitchens and food pantries around NYC. My husband and I run the largest food pantry in Brooklyn, Oneg Shabbos. We distribute food to over 4,000 individuals a week and the FoodBank is an incredible resource. We need proper backing from the government to get the food to the people who need it most because each year it keeps getting harder.

Oct. 23 2007 03:12 PM
michal from brooklyn

I visited Masbia and it is an amazing soup kitchen--clean, respectful, great food, considerate of and caring for all those who come--New York should have more like it!

Oct. 23 2007 01:08 PM
Alex from Borough-Park Brooklyn

I started a soup kitchen with a friend 2 1/2 years ago; we now serve 160 suppers per day 5 days a week. The last few weeks we have much more families, adults with their children. With a $500,000 budget a year,we give out over 50,000 hot suppers.
My personal vision is to transform NYC from a "city that never sleeps" to "a city that no one go's hungry". People form all colors come in every day, with no questions asked.
Less than 10 percent of our budget comes from political "member items", the rest is from private donations.
Everyone gets served bread, hot soup, chicken, a starch, vegetable and dessert.
I don’t want to be saying something that can be interpreted as derogatory towards other organizations doing holy work, but I think they should leave paper work, big studies and focus groups, to health insurance companies, all the big food relief organizations spend a lot of money on non-foods.

With all the money spent on last week's released report I could have run another soup kitchen for a year.

And the same thing goes for applying for grants from the big organizations; they want so much paper work, the cost of the secretary putting it together is too much, that it does not pay to pursue.
Don’t get me wrong, they all do holy work, but this is just something to think about.
[MASBIA, the only KOSHER Soup Kitchen in NYC run by ultra-orthodox Jews is located in the 11219 zip code. It cannot be found in the report's map, although it is licensed by NYC]

Oct. 23 2007 12:36 PM
Robert from NYC

The poverty line really is set waaaaay too high. $45,000 with one child today is nothing these days. Kinda makes me sick now that I just learned that CEO of Oxford HMO earns $29,061,599/annum with $80 million stock options. I wonder if he goes to soup kitchens!

Oct. 23 2007 11:25 AM
Robert from NYC

Maybe there should be more verification of these full-time employed as to how little they earn. I barely live on SSDI (and I mean barely) but I don't go to soup kitchens; there are people who need that much more than I do, I can manage a small food budget so I do with that. I don't mean to accuse anyone in particular but there are those who just look for free handouts no matter what they earn, so as I say it might be a good idea to check the earnings of these employed who come to the kitchens.

Oct. 23 2007 11:13 AM
Rick from reality based world

I agree with the thrust of the topic that the fed. should be funding these programs fully. But think about all of the rich and super rich new yorkers that could easily pay make up the difference, including the mayor himself!

yet when people like the mayor and other rich people give away money it tends to be given to intsitutions that don't need it as much: carnegie hall, harvard U., the new york library and other similar groups (johns hopkins, columbia etc).

Food banks needs to be hitting up people like Bill gates and other foundations with more zeal!

anyway, this is all symptomatic of the new "gilded age". yuck!

Oct. 23 2007 11:13 AM

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