TASK Community Meal Site Coordinator, Rosa Prada-Rodriguez (left), smiles with families lined up at Bible Way Cathedral in South Trenton.
To meet the steadily climbing demand for TASK meals throughout the community, we are excited to announce the launch of a new mobile soup kitchen in early 2024. The project marks the first step in our plan to expand food distribution in Trenton.
During the pilot phase of this project, our focus will be serving three groups that have been particularly impacted by hunger in our area.
Families & Children: The biggest growth amongst diners in Trenton has been families with young children. Statistically, we know that 37% of the capital city’s children (18 years and younger) are living in poverty. That’s nearly three times the national average.
At community meal sites like Bible Way Cathedral in South Trenton, families line up for blocks, hours before meal distributions begin. In addition, programs like STEAMpark, an after-school program at Parker Elementary that operates as a community meal site, are asking for more and more meals.
Experts consistently link hunger to long-term impacts on a developing child’s physical and mental health. By feeding more families and children, we can improve those outcomes.
Seniors: Some 22% of Trenton’s seniors, ages 65 and above, are living in poverty. Across the nation, reports show that seniors are treating food as a flexible expense, foregoing a meal in order to afford things like rent and medical expenses.
We also know that transportation can be a barrier to many seniors. Since the pandemic began, we have worked with the City of Trenton to provide to-go meals to a number of low-income senior housing sites across the area. By offering mobile meals, we can provide more access to more people.
Chronically Homeless: A majority of Mercer County’s homeless population—roughly 65%—can be found in Trenton. By connecting more people to meals, we can help relieve a basic struggle and help connect folks to available resources at TASK and other organizations.
And More! Food is the starting point for so many — the first step on the path to self-sufficiency and a better quality of life. While we know that we have much to learn in our first few months of operation, we are planning for the future.
As the demand for basic needs like hygiene kits has more than doubled in the last year, our goal is to complement our meal service by distributing these products as well.
In addition, we intend to bring staff on the road and co-locate with other organizations to help enhance outreach and connect people to the services they need to thrive.
You are the key in the ignition that will put us on the road to success. We are proud to partner with you on such an important initiative, one made possible by your belief that everyone in our community deserves dignity, kindness and a good meal. Thank you for your support!
Tag: families with children - fighting hunger in Trenton - food truck - seniors - TASK to-go meals - Trenton - Date Posted: Nov 20, 2023 - Author: Trenton Soup Kitchen