The pandemic has shown the underbelly of the United States. It has exposed the vulnerable and weak parts of our society to the light of day in ways that few crises has.
Poverty disproportionately affects black, brown and Indigenous communities. It, however, doesn’t see race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation, geographical location, or education level. Make the wrong choices, have a stroke of bad luck, or lose your job in a pandemic and you can go from living from paycheck to paycheck to hoping you can stave off what you fear is pending doom in what is supposed to be the richest country in the world.
Where this reality is new for millions of US citizens, millions more already struggled to make ends meet — including a large number of Philadelphians. They were already fighting to keep the lights on and to put food on the table. To make matters trickier, portions of the city are devoid of healthy options or without easy access to them. These aptly called food deserts put more strain on an already tenuous situation.
In a country where 1% of the population controlled 32.7% of the wealth in Q4 2019 and remaining top 49% another 65.8% of it, 164.1 million people are left to scramble for scraps (1.4%).
Many steps can be taken to close this gap. One such action that can be enacted today is to ensure that one of the most basic human rights are realized. Along with other North Philadelphia based community organizations like North 10 and Temple University’s Center for Urban Bioethics, CTS has been working to address food security in the Nicetown-Tioga-Hunting Park neighborhoods of the city.
Since April, resources have been allocated to providing food bags and frozen meals to community residents. Currently, serving over 800 units a week, this effort has been a lifeline for many and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.
This program not only puts food in people’s hands, but has also been an opportunity to provide employment to several neighbors in the way of facilitating the parcel packing and deliveries.
Your continued support enables us to assist in this endeavor. It will also mean that we will be able to grow the operation and make it a permanent fixture in the community moving forward as there are plans to find a permanent home.