More than 80 patients and their families received an array of food items for Thanksgiving meals donated by employees of St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway. Turkey, chicken, ham, potatoes, rice, vegetables, stuffing mix, gravy, macaroni and cheese, dinner rolls, cranberry sauce, desserts and utensils were in the decorated baskets. There was also a large, heated tent that served as a food grab-and-go distribution center on Nov. 23.
“It brings us great joy to know that we were able to help make this year’s Thanksgiving both enjoyable and nourishing for more than 80 families,” Sharika Gordon, St. John’s vice president and chief human resources officer, said in a news release. “We care deeply about our patients and community members, and the hospital’s staff wanted to do all that they could to make sure that no person is left hungry this Thanksgiving.”
The nonprofit group Feeding America reports that more than 50 million people experienced hunger in 2020 including 17 million children. Even before Covid-19, more than 35 million Americans were considered food insecure. Organization officials said that the coronavirus pandemic has heightened the problem. Nationwide, roughly one in six people were projected to be hungry in 2020, according to National Geographic.
“For us, it is not only about providing excellent health care strictly within the confines of our hospital and community medical practices,” Renee Hastick-Motes, the hospital’s vice president of external affairs stated in the release. “We take great pride in providing needed resources within the community itself, which is what this food initiative is all about.”
St. John’s Episcopal Hospital is a 257-bed facility and the only hospital on the Rockaway Peninsula. It also serves southwestern Nassau County, including the Five Towns.
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