A food distribution center is coming to downtown Glen Cove courtesy of Long Island Cares in response to the high volume of calls it received from the city's residents.
The temporary emergency food distribution center, at 68 School Street, which will be Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant, will offer food boxes and other supplies to residents. It opened on April 1. The office of State Assemblyman Charles Lavine, of Glen Cove, secured the spot. The storefront, which is currently vacant, is owned by Khin Myint.
Long Island Cares reached out to Lavine's office to offer assistance. According to Paule Pachter, the non-profit's CEO, Glen Cove residents will be able to pick-up emergency food boxes without having to make an appointment. Staff and volunteers will also employ physical distancing practices and residents are requested to do the same.
The temporary pop-up distribution center is being donated by the landlord, Pachter said. "We went to Glen Cove," he said, “and met with the assemblyman, met with the landlord and in five minutes he put the key in my hand."
Glen Cove City Councilman Gaitley Stevenson-Mathews said that he was happy to see Long Island Cares help the Glen Cove community. "With our current health crisis, our population of food insecure has understandably grown," Stevenson-Mathews said. "It's been remarkable to see people step up to the plate to make sure people get meals."
Jessica Rosati, the chief program officer for Long Island Cares, said in a press release that the temporary distribution center will remain open until Gov. Andrew Cuomo announces reductions in physical distancing, which will not happen until the pandemic is under control.
The property owner, Myint, was not available for comment. However, Patcher said that Mynt told him that he wanted to "give back and help people. And he gave us this beautiful storefront and we're going to be there as long as we need to be there."
"We really are all in this together," said Lavine. "For us to survive, we are going to have to take care of those who are most vulnerable and it's hard to imagine that there are an estimated 200,000 people in nutritional need in Nassau and Suffolk County alone. We have to make sure everyone stays strong and healthy and that is our obligation as Americans."
The Long Island Cares Glen Cove COVID-19 Distribution Location will be open two days a week, on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Fridays from 3 to 7 p.m. In addition to the temporary distribution center in Glen Cove, Long Island Cares operates six additional permanent emergency food distribution sites throughout Long Island to help the 259,000 Long Islanders experiencing food insecurity and hunger.
Patcher said that there will be another temporary food distribution center opening up in Valley Stream. Valley Stream and Franklin Square have high needs for food, he said.