QUEENS (PIX11) — A weekly distribution center in Queens that helps hundreds of NYCHA families is now also helping asylum seekers and their families get critical supplies. The director on Wednesday issued a call for help.

The Harding Ford Vision program helps families get food, clothing, and diapers each week next to the South Jamaica Houses in the back of a church. Now, it’s becoming a vital place for asylum seekers to get help too. But supplies are low, and the community needs to step in to make it happen.  

Five-month-old Dylan Juela is crying because he’s hungry. But, his mom told PIX11 News he was also a little cranky waiting in the hot sun for over an hour and a half in this pantry line.  

Lisette Lobo from Honduras said in Spanish that food is very expensive. She worries weekly about how she will afford to feed her two sons.

The lines at the center are longer than usual, said Bishop Alfonzo Brown. He helps run the operation, which has become a lifeline for many New Yorkers. 

Brown started this distribution effort back in 1996. He’s never seen such a need. 

Volunteers give out eggs, zucchini, potatoes, onions, carrots and yogurt. Their program was stretched to the limit during the pandemic, said Joan Bradley, the chair of the Harding Ford Vision program; but never like this. With the massive increase in asylum seekers in New York City, Bradley said they are running low on supplies, like hygiene products, baby formula, wipes, and toiletries.  

In addition to supplies, they need bilingual volunteers who can help too. If you want to give, you can donate here.