FEEDING THE FOOD INSECURE

September 05, 2018 at 4:30 am

We’ll take you inside the Long Island program, Island Harvest, that is providing reliable access to affordable food.

Aired on September 4, 2018.

Transcript Print

> ONE IN TEN LONG ISLANDERS
STRUGGLES WITH FOOD INSECURITY,
THEY LACK RELIABLE ACCESS TO
AFFORDABLE, NUTRITIOUS FOOD.
ISLAND HARVEST FOOD BANK AND
OTHER HEALTH ORGANIZATIONS HAVE
TEAMED UP WITH A NEW PROGRAM
CALLED FOOD AS HEALTH.
THE HOSPITAL-BASED INITIATIVE IS
THE FIRST OF ITS KINDS IN NEW
YORK STATE.
HERE IS THE PRESIDENT AND CEO.
RANDY, WELCOME TO YOU.
LET ME START OFF IF I CAN,
BEFORE I GET TO YOUR
ORGANIZATION, ACTUALLY WHAT
THEY'RE DOING, TALK ABOUT THIS
NOTION OF FOOD INSECURITY, IT'S
A FAIRLY NEW TERM, AT LEAST TO
THE PUBLIC, GIVE US A BETTER
SENSE OF WHAT IT MEANS.
>> WELL, WE TYPICALLY USE THE
TERM HUNGER, FOOD INSECURITY IS
THE NEW TERM THAT WE USE, AND IT
DESCRIBES, REALLY, NOT KNOWING
WHERE YOUR NEXT MEAL IS COMING
FROM OR WHEN IT MAY BE AVAILABLE
TO YOU.
WHEN WE'RE SPEAKING ABOUT MEALS,
WE'RE TALKING ABOUT GOOD,
HEALTHY NUTRITIOUS MEALS.
>> TELL US ABOUT ISLAND HARVEST
AND HOW IT WORKS.
>> IT'S A FOOD BANK ON LONG
ISLAND.
WE'RE HELPING ABOUT 300,000
PEOPLE ALL ACROSS LONG ISLAND.
AND WE DO THAT THROUGH OBVIOUSLY
GIVING FOOD OUT TO THE
COMMUNITY, BUT EQUALLY AS
IMPORTANT ARE THE SUPPORTIVE
SERVICES WE COULD PROVIDE AROUND
GIVING OUT FOOD.
YOU SEE, WE COULD GIVE SOMEBODY
A CAN OF FOOD, BUT WE'RE GOING
TO HELP THEM JUST FOR THAT DAY,
AND SO WHAT WE DO IS WORK REALLY
HARD TO FIND WAYS TO HELP THEM
TO BECOME SELF-SUFFICIENT.
AND SO WE HELP THEM WITH
SERVICES LIKE SNAP OUTREACH,
WHICH IS FOOD STAMPS, NUTRITION
EDUCATION, WHICH REALLY IS THE
CORNERSTONE NOW OF ALL OF OUR
PROGRAMS.
WE HAVE TARGETED PROGRAMS FOR
VETERANS, FOR CHILDREN, FOR
SENIOR CITIZENS, AND FOR
FAMILIES.
OFFERING THEM LEARNING
OPPORTUNITIES ABOUT FINANCIAL
SECURITY, NUTRITION EDUCATION
AND INFORMATION, HEALTHY EATING.
WE EVEN HAVE A FARMING PROGRAM,
A GARDEN PROGRAM, SO THAT WE CAN
TEACH PEOPLE HOW TO BECOME
SELF-SUFFICIENT AND REALLY MAKE
SURE THAT THEY CAN SUPPLEMENT
OVER AND ABOVE FOOD THAT THEY
MAY BE GETTING FROM EMERGENCY
FOOD PROGRAMS.
>> TELL ME SOME MORE ABOUT THE
SPECIFICS OF THE FOOD IS HEALTH
PROGRAM AND HOW THIS ALLIANCE
CAME ABOUT.
>> YOU KNOW, THIS IS REALLY A
NATURAL PROGRAM THAT WHEN YOU
THINK ABOUT SOMEBODY WITH A
CONDITION, A HEALTH CONDITION
LIKE DIABETES OR HEART DISEASE,
WHAT THEY EAT IMPACTS HOW THEY
FEEL AND WHAT HAPPENS WITH THEIR
BODY.
AND IT ALSO IMPACTS WHETHER
MEDICINES ARE WORKING PROPERLY.
AND SO WE APPROACH NORTH WELL
HEALTH ABOUT THIS PROGRAM THAT
WE WOULD PROVIDE A DIETITIAN
THAT WOULD BE ON SITE AT A
HOSPITAL, AND WOULD WORK WITH
PATIENTS AS THEY'RE BEING
DISCHARGED, OR PATIENTS THAT ARE
COMING FROM THEIR WOUND CLINIC.
OUR DIETITIAN WILL MEET WITH
PATIENTS AND TALK TO THEM ABOUT
THEIR CONDITION.
AND HELP THEM CREATE MEAL PLANS
SO THAT THEY UNDERSTAND WHY
FOOD -- CERTAIN TYPES OF FOODS
ARE IMPORTANT AND HOW THEY
INTERACT WITH THEIR BODY.
YOU KNOW, VERY OFTEN DOCTORS
WILL TELL THEM YOU NEED TO EAT
BETTER, YOU NEED TO EAT HEALTHY,
BUT THEY DON'T GO INTO THE
DETAIL.
OUR DIETITIANS ARE ABLE TO SPEND
THAT TIME WITH THEM AND GO
THROUGH THAT.
>> SOME OF THESE MIGHT BE
CONCERNED ABOUT, WHAT IS THIS
GOING TO COST ME, CAN I HANDLE
WHATEVER THE COST WILL BE,
WHAT'S THE ANSWER TO THAT?
>> THAT'S TRUE.
WHAT WE CAN DO IS WORK WITH THEM
TO TEACH THEM HOW TO SHOP
PROPERLY.
IN SOME CASES IT MEANS BUYING IN
BULK.
IN SOME CASES THEY CAN'T BUY IN
BULK BECAUSE THEY DON'T HAVE THE
ABILITY TO STORE FOOD.
FOR EXAMPLE, SOMEONE'S LIVING IN
A SHELTER OR IN A SHARED HOME
SITUATION, BUT WE ALSO DO
TRAINING IN SUPERMARKETS TO
TEACH PEOPLE ABOUT SHOPPING
PROPERLY.
WHEN WE COUPLE THAT WITH COOKING
DEMONSTRATIONS, AND TEACHING
THEM ABOUT EATING HEALTHY, WE'RE
MAKING SURE THAT WE'RE GIVING
THEM THE FULL PICTURE.
>> WELL, IT CERTAINLY SOUNDS
LIKE A MARVELOUS PROGRAM, AND I
KNOW YOUR ORGANIZATION HAS DONE
WONDERFUL WORK FOR A WHILE NOW.
AND THE FACT THAT YOU'VE BEEN
ABLE TO JOIN IN WITH THESE OTHER
ORGANIZATIONS GIVES US SOME HOPE
FOR THIS.
SO, AGAIN, IT'S FABULOUS
PROGRAM, EVERYONE APPRECIATES
THAT AND APPRECIATE YOU SPENDING
SOME TIME WITH US AND EXPLAINING
IT TO US.
YOU BE WELL.
>> THANK YOU SO MUCH, APPRECIATE
IT.
>> FOR MORE INFORMATION ON HOW
YOU CAN GET INVOLVED, VISIT OUR
WEBSITE AT METROFOCUS.ORG.

Mutual of America PSEG

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, Judy and Josh Weston and the Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation.

WNET

© WNET All Rights Reserved.

825 Eighth Avenue

New York, NY 10019