Except for the home team and visiting players and personnel, Yankee Stadium has been empty this season due to Covid-19. This vacancy has allowed the Food Bank of New York City to host a free food distribution drive outside Yankee Stadium’s gates.
On September 21st, the Food Bank of New York City served free packaged food to over 500 families in the Bronx community, mostly to those families whose livelihoods have been impacted by Covid-19. This food drive comes at a time when 25 percent of food pantries and soup kitchens in New York City are currently closed.
Residents and volunteer workers arrived at Yankee Stadium on Monday with the usual masks covering their faces. Workers wore t-shirts with imprints saying, “Hunger is a problem. New Yorkers are the solution.” The line designated for families to receive free food stretched around the block.
Of the Yankees’ support, New York City council member Vanessa Gibson said, “We would like to thank the New York Yankees for recognizing that they are our neighbors and our partners.”
The Bronx has been hit especially hard by Covid-19 and its resultant economic difficulties. Even in normal times, there are over 400,000 Bronx residents who live below the federal poverty level line. Unemployment in the borough has increased by a factor of five this year, from 5.8 percent last year to 24.9 percent this year.
The Food Bank of New York City is one of the largest charities in the country, providing NYC residents with over 400,000 free meals daily. Founded in 1983 at the tail-end of a nationwide recession, it has over 1,200 volunteers on its staff and has distributed over 1.3 billion meals since its inception.
After Monday, the Food Bank of NYC will visit the boroughs of Manhattan and Queens.
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