Thank You, Whole Foods

May Tom, West End Senior Center Volunteer; Anne Shears, West End Senior Center Volunteer; Volunteer from Task Rabbits; Serena Hsu, Marketing Team Leader, Whole Foods at the Charles River Plaza; City Councilor Ross, District 8; Lia Tota, Director of the ABCD North End/West End Neighborhood Service Center (NE/WE NSC); Huseyin Senturk, Intake Worker, NE/WE NSC; (Myra) Laksmi Prawiroatmodjo, West End Senior Center Volunteer; Geetha Renganathan, West End Senior Center Volunteer; (Deba) Debarchana Dutta, West End Senior Center Volunteer; and Dawn Sheers, West End Senior Center Volunteer. All proceeds to benefit the ABCD West End Emergency Food Pantry.

ABCD North End/West End Neighborhood Service Center (NE/WE NSC) thanks Whole Foods Market on Cambridge Street for heading up the outstanding “Wish-List” fundraiser on Aug. 20 to increase supplies in the ABCD West End Emergency Food Pantry, located in the Boston Public Library at 151 Cambridge St. ABCD NE/WE NSC (West End Senior Center) volunteers handed out “Wish-Lists” to customers, City Councilor Mike Ross helped with the food drive, and students from the North End Music and Performing Arts Center filled the store with live guitar music. Customers donated more than $850 worth of food in less than two hours and Whole Foods Market matched that with a $500 in food items donation. So over $1,350 worth of nutritious food items will now combat hunger for Boston seniors and others in need in the West End.  The food drive ran from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Task Rabbit volunteers helped with the food drive and delivered the food to the food pantry, where it is already being given out.

The NE/WE NSC is seeing an increased demand for its services in both the North End and West End.  However, what is shocking is the number of working adults who are unemployed or underemployed and struggling to feed themselves and their families, as well as disabled folks and veterans of the Armed Forces, which would not have been the case before the start of the recession. In addition to running the West End Food Pantry, for which the Food Drive was for, the North End/West End NSC also runs a food pantry out of the North End.

Also, the NE/WE NSC is offering a breakfast program at our North End site for the working adults enrolled in our ESOL classes.  Many work in the North End in the service industry and do not have enough money once their rent is paid for food.  Those clients, in addition to receiving a healthful breakfast (cereal, cocoa, fruit), also use the food pantry.