July 25, 2024
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Met Council Launches Emergency Pesach Appeal To Feed Record Number of Jews in Need

Over 310,000 New Yorkers expected to tap into food pantry network this holiday season.

(Courtesy of Met Council) Met Council has launched an emergency fundraising appeal to ensure the organization can provide free food to the more than 310,000 New Yorkers who rely on their free food distributions for Pesach. In a year where so many families are struggling, Met Council is gearing up to supply almost 3 million pounds of food to members of the Jewish community through its pantries and community partners across the five boroughs, Long Island, Westchester and New Jersey. In addition, Met Council will provide over $500,000 in emergency food cards for those without access to one of its food pantries. Due to inflation and the overall increased need, Met Council is aiming to raise $2.5 million in emergency funds to provide for those in need this Pesach.

Last year, Met Council helped 307,993 New Yorkers celebrate Passover, a near doubling of those supported in previous years. They are expecting another year of record numbers in 2022 amid an inflationary crisis that sees no end in sight. Even as the New York area continues to slowly reopen after the COVID-19 pandemic, its effects continue to wreak havoc on the local economy, with unemployment still double the national rate, supply chains in shambles and other compounding factors. Many families and individuals are still suffering from job loss and reduced income after depleting their savings.

“There are people who in 2019 were able to get by for Pesach that now are struggling to pay their monthly bills,” said David G. Greenfield, CEO of Met Council. “This year those families who lost their jobs during the pandemic and fell behind are struggling to get themselves and their family through Pesach because of unprecedented inflation. The need is greater than we’ve ever seen.”

Even with Met Council leveraging its resources to purchase large wholesale quantities of food through its special pricing from manufacturers, the prices are still astronomical. Core Pesach products like matzah, gefilte fish and cooking oil have risen in price by as much at 45% due to product shortages and inflated costs of raw materials, labor and transportation.

“Not only is Met Council helping more families this year than ever before, we are doing it while seeing exorbitant increases in food prices,” Greenfield explained. “While many in the community are celebrating Pesach in resorts, there are just as many rationing their trips to the supermarket in hopes of saving money on gas. We need the community to join us in helping our neighbors get through Pesach.”

The free Pesach packages being distributed include fresh produce, kosher chicken, eggs and Pesach-specific foods like matzah, gefilte fish and over 25 additional items. Met Council needs the community’s participation more than ever this year to ensure that they can beat the rising inflation and guarantee that those in need experience a beautiful Pesach.

For more information and to participate in the campaign, please visit: www.metcouncil.org/pesach

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