TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Unity House was awarded $88,596 from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation to expand its Community Resources Food Pantry and Community Meals program in 2021. This expansion will address the dramatic increase in demand for emergency food services caused from COVID-19.
In 2020, Unity House’s Community Resources Program served 2,115 households through its food pantry and Community Meals served 21,001 lunches. In addition, 159 households were helped throughout the year with diapers, formula, and other basics for babies.
“The increase in need reflects more frequent visits from people and families who are familiar to us and new visits from people who have never before reached out for help due to food insecurity. Many people are accessing the Food Pantry for the first time due to a sudden loss of income. With many children learning remotely, parents on already tight budgets are confronted with the challenge of providing 10 additional meals every week. We are very grateful for the funding that the Mother Cabrini Foundation is providing to help support and expand these programs.”Chris Burke, Unity House chief executive officer
Unity House’s Community Resources Program provides crisis intervention, emergency food, clothing and housewares, homelessness prevention, laundry, and shower facilities, and help with SNAP benefits. Monday through Friday, the Food Pantry provides three-day supplies of food, diapers, formula, and baby food to parents and families in need. In addition, the organization’s Community Meals Program serves a free hot meal to those who are food insecure every weekday. Prior to the COVID pandemic, those meals were provided in Unity House’s dining room and were served as sit-down, restaurant style meals. Currently, to protect the public health, meals are available for takeout only.