NORTH PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - In 2010, Easter Outreach served 100 meals to the needy in the Delaware Valley. Eight years later and operating out of a Philabundance warehouse in North Philadelphia, that number has soared to 8,000.
"We're looking for a way to think about the greatest Christian holiday as the resurrection and there isn't a ton of outreach to happen that time of year. So, thinking about what is a way to serve neighbors and connect with community," said Vito Baldini, with Easter Outreach.
A simple gesture of a hot, holiday meal is how Easter Outreach is working to build stronger communities with the help of 1,500 volunteers, 70 faith-based churches and organizations and chief partner Philabundance, an organization devoted to ending hunger. The boxes will feed families of four over the Easter holiday.
All of the non-perishables went out to families. The drive happening March 31 is about getting the fresh food to families. 1,700 boxes of fresh fruits, vegetables, Cornish hens, pastries and bread.
"While one in eight people struggle with food insecurity in the United States, that number is one in five in Philadelphia. That's almost double the national average," said Sam Retamar, of Philabundance.
Retamar explained that hunger is not a problem in Philadelphia, but, rather, a crisis.
Volunteers like Faatimah Curry not only hope to help ease the crisis, but work to fulfill a religious mission.
"I'm a follower of Jesus, so understanding he came down to serve others and at our church, Story Philly, we believe that we're going to go above and beyond for the next person and that starts in the community I live in or where we are from," said Faatimah.
"It's cool that we get to provide to people that are insecure with their food and feed the hungry," said volunteer Chaim O'Deens.
Philabundance said it feeds 90,000 people in the Delaware Valley each week. How can that be fixed? The organization said with the continued and growing support from donors and partner organizations.
"We want to end hunger once and for all," said Retamar.
For more information, contact Philabundance here.