New York, NY — City Harvest, New York’s first and largest food rescue organization, today
launched its annual Share Lunch Fight Hunger campaign (May 8- June 8), inviting New Yorkers
to donate money they would normally spend on lunch to help feed more than 13,000 New
York City children and families for the entire summer, when access to free school lunches may
be limited. The 2023 campaign launches at a time when food prices in the U.S. continue to rise
and families are still struggling to make up for the loss of pandemic-era aid.

With 1 in 4 children in New York City experiencing food insecurity, City Harvest also released a
new report today revealing that families with children represent the age group in New York
City with the highest surge in visits to food pantries since the pandemic began.

The TinyHands, Hungry Bellies: The State of Child Food Insecurity in NYC report shows that City
Harvest and its partners logged nearly 11.4 million visits by families with children over the
past year – a massive 67% jump compared to 2019. The report highlights how millions of New
York families continue to struggle to put meals on the table as prices for grocery staples
continue to be at 40-year highs following the pandemic, and many families are navigating the
expiration of pandemic-era expansions to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
benefits in March.

Additional findings include:
● Over the past year, Queens – the borough hit first and hardest by the COVID-19 virus
and home to the most undocumented immigrants, many of whom were shut out from
key pandemic-era government supports – has seen an 87% increase in pantry visits by
children compared to 2019 data.
● In communities in the Bronx and Brooklyn where child hunger was already a leading
issue for families, the crisis only worsened – the Bronx saw a 46% increase, while
Brooklyn saw a 61% increase compared to pre-pandemic.
● Manhattan saw over a million visits in 2022, a 64% jump since 2019.

The challenges so many families are facing were underscored by a recent report by United
Way of New York City and the Fund for the City of New York, in partnership with City Harvest,
which found that an estimated 50% of New York City households can’t afford to live in the city
and nearly 3 million residents do not have enough money to rent an apartment, buy food and
medicine, and get around town, among other basic necessities. The report also finds that a
family of four in all five boroughs must now make at least $100,000 to adequately cover basic

“As families grapple with record-high grocery prices and recent cuts to pandemic-era benefits
like SNAP, it’s more important than ever that we work together to ensure children and families
across our city have access to the nutritious food they need to thrive,” said Jilly Stephens, CEO
of City Harvest. “Share Lunch Fight Hunger provides a simple way for everyday New Yorkers
to make an immediate difference for their neighbors in need over the long summer months,
when access to free school meals may become limited.”

Founded 21 years ago by Dana Cowin, then Editor-in-Chief of Food & Wine magazine and
current City Harvest Food Council member, Share Lunch Fight Hunger has brought together
hundreds of individuals and corporations in New York City to raise awareness and funds to
help City Harvest feed New York City families experiencing food insecurity during the summer
months. Since its inception, Share Lunch Fight Hunger has raised enough to help provide 38.5
million meals to New York City families who are struggling to put food on the table.

“I launched Share Lunch Fight Hunger 21 years ago because I believe that all children should
have access to nutritious foods,” said Dana Cowin. “Motivated by City Harvest’s ability to help
feed 46 kids with just $20 dollars, I wanted to highlight that sharing the price of your lunch can
make a difference in the lives of fellow New Yorkers. There’s no time more important to donate
than now, as inflation and other financial pressures are affecting kids’ access to healthy food–1
in 4 kids are expected to face food insecurity this year. This is heart-breaking and something
we can address.”

“With recent reductions to SNAP benefits and the high price of food, more and more people
are dependent on food pantries,” said Christian Estrada, Director of Food Services at United
Bronx Parents Food Pantry in the South Bronx, an affiliate of Acacia Network. “Most of the
people that we serve are families with several children. We need help from everybody to make
sure that we can keep providing food to our community all summer long.”

New Yorkers who want to take part in the Share Lunch Fight Hunger campaign can visit here to
donate to a fundraising team, start their own fundraising team, or make a general donation. A
special Share Lunch Fight Hunger team will be captained by internet sensation Tariq the “Corn
Kid,” who is giving back to City Harvest in honor of his eighth birthday.

“It’s always been important to me to give back to my community,” Tariq said. “It makes me sad
to think there are kids in NYC who don’t have enough to eat. I want to help make a difference
and give back to others.”

This year, City Harvest aims to raise enough to help feed 13,000 New York City children and
their families for the entire summer. On Thursday, May 11, City Harvest, joined by City Harvest
Board and Food Council member Melba Wilson, will light the Empire State Building to mark
the start of the campaign.

Local businesses will also be contributing to the campaign throughout the upcoming month.
On May 13 and 14, City Harvest Food Council member Chef Dominique Ansel of Dominique
Ansel Bakery in Soho will donate a portion of the sales of their legendary Cronut® to Share
Lunch Fight Hunger, in celebration of the Cronut®’s 10th birthday. Throughout the month of
May, Manhattan-based Artist Sonya Sklaroff will be donating a portion of proceeds from a
limited edition signed fine art print to City Harvest. On Sunday, June 4, City Harvest Food
Council members Maneesh Goyal and Hari Nayak will host a family-friendly drag brunch at
their Michelin-recognized Indian restaurant SONA in Flatiron in support of the campaign.
Thank you to our partners, Two Good®, BlackRock, Citi, Healthfirst, Blackstone Charitable
Foundation, Cerberus, Intermediate Capital Group, Paul Hastings LLP, TF Cornerstone, Wafra,
Warburg Pincus Gives Back, and our media partner, PIX11.

About City Harvest
City Harvest is New York’s first and largest food rescue organization, helping to feed millions of
New Yorkers who struggle to put meals on their tables. During our 40 years serving New
Yorkers in need, we have rescued more than one billion pounds of fresh, nutritious food and
delivered it—free of charge—to hundreds of food pantries, soup kitchens, community partners,
and our own Mobile Markets® across the five boroughs. This year, we will rescue and
distribute more than 75 million pounds of nutritious food to our neighbors in need. Named one
of America’s Top 100 Charities by Forbes, City Harvest works alongside our community
partners to boost community capacity, expand nutrition education, and strengthen local food
systems. Since our founding in 1982, City Harvest has always been there to feed our city—one
day, one meal, one New Yorker at a time. To learn more, please visit