Mid-Hudson Valley and Catskills, NY…Senator Jen Metzger (SD-42) has been delivering gallons of NYS Clean, a 75% alcohol solution, to the 22 food pantries throughout her Senate District. The 2,400 square-mile district comprises all of Sullivan County and parts of Orange, Ulster, and Delaware Counties, and during the second digital episode of her online series last month, Senator Metzger shared information on local food distribution initiatives in the region, how individuals in need can access resources, and ways that members of the public can help during the COVID-19 global pandemic.
One of her first deliveries was to St. Peter's Catholic Church Food Pantry in Liberty, where she stayed to help assemble grocery bags of food to distribute to the growing number of families served by the pantry.
On Saturday, Senator Metzger made stops at the Rosendale Food Pantry, as well as the Rondout Valley Food Pantry where she received a tour of the facilities from pantry manager, Charlotte Knapp. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the pantry has adapted their former walk-in operation to delivery-only, taking individual orders from guests by phone and distributing to communities outside of their service area. In addition to offering produce, non-perishables, and personal hygiene products, Rondout Valley Food Pantry also assembles bags for guest birthday parties and holidays.
"I've been impressed with how the food pantries have set up their operations to distribute food safely during this pandemic, and with very limited resources, the donations of hand sanitizer have been greatly appreciated," said Senator Jen Metzger. “The volunteers and staff at these organizations are putting in long days to help feed the growing number of food-insecure families, and I am grateful for their dedication and service to our communities."
To date, Senator Metzger and her team have delivered sanitizer to Delaware Opportunities -- Hamden Food Bank (Hamden); Faith Tabernacle Food Pantry (Port Jervis); Fed by Grace Food Pantry (Port Jervis); Florida Community Pantry (Florida); Goshen Ecumenical Pantry, Inc. (Goshen); Helping Hands of Drew United Methodist Church (Port Jervis); Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church (Otisville); HONOR (Middletown); Livingston Manor Little Free Pantry (Livingston Manor); Narrowsburg Ecumenical Food Pantry (Narrowsburg); Rondout Valley Food Pantry (Stone Ridge); Rosendale Food Pantry (Rosendale); Salvation Army: Port Jervis Food Pantry (Port Jervis); St. Mary's Food Pantry (Port Jervis); St. Peter's Catholic Church Food Pantry (Liberty).
This week, Senator Metzger will return to Sullivan County to make deliveries at St. John's Caring Hands Food Pantry and the Sullivan County Federation for the Homeless Soup Kitchen & Food Pantry.
Food pantries in Senate District 42 still in need of sanitizer should call Senator Metzger’s office at (845) 344-3311. Additionally, Metzger’s Community Conversations series will again delve into the topic of food insecurity in the region on Thursday, June 11, with guests from Ulster County’s Project Resilience and Sullivan County’s Foster Supply Hospitality.