NEW YORK — Our world changed seemingly overnight. Jobs and schools shut down, and many quickly realized that without paychecks, they would need help just to feed their families.
In times of great need, it’s hard to see how we’ll come back, but we are in this together.
As a result, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio predicted up to two million New Yorkers will be experiencing food insecurity.
Nationwide about 30 million school children are expected to be hungry because of living in lockdown.
We’ve seen the heartbreaking images of hungry New Yorkers, people whose lives changed overnight, exposing how many of our neighbors are living an all too vulnerable life, paycheck to paycheck.
“Nobody should be going hungry. We’ve got a lot of food. We can get it to you.” Nic Bash is the solutions oriented founder of HoneyFlower Foods , a 2-year-old plant-based food company that was facing a crisis just weeks ago.
“Almost within a week, we lost 70% of our business. Airports out, colleges, hospitals gone. I was like, ‘What are we going to do?'”
Having cooked up a business built on relationships he knew now was the time to feed the hungry who were unemployed with no safety net, while keeping his crew of 25 working.
He essentially became a start-up while being a start-up.
And within days, he was dishing up 22,000 meals weekly right into bellies hungry for his healthy, nutrition-packed food: soba noodles with mushrooms, and curried potato cauliflower, twice-baked eggplant.
“It’s very different. It’s not a ham sandwich sitting on a shelf!”
Now it’s going to Brooklyn community centers, homeless shelters, food drop offs, neighborhood food trucks.
Bash partnered with City Harvest and others, using donations to keep his workers paid in this crisis. His new model is so successful.
“We hired six people in the kitchen in the last two weeks.”
Just another example of a small business with a heart able to hear the calling of change.
“It’s going to be very interesting to see what happens, who knows what happens over the next year, but we’ll see what happens. It’s an interesting time,” he said.
This mission to feed in some of New York’s most vulnerable areas is vital: Statistics show minority populations from the boroughs are dying at a higher rate.
They also suffer at a higher rate from the underlying diseases that fuel COVID-19: high blood pressure, heart and kidney disease.
It’s why healthy, whole food, like HoneyFlower, is vital more than ever to help fight off those diseases.
To be a part of HoneyFlower’s mission you can donate at www.LunchBoxNYC.org