As the hunger epidemic grows, Martha’s Choice donates 2 million pounds of food to 12K people in MontCo.
by Melissa Jacobs
Martha’s Choice knows all about miracles. At the end of 2020, faced with overwhelming food insecurity created by the pandemic, the Norristown-based nonprofit acquired land to start a farm and grow produce to distribute to families in need. Thanks to the help of volunteers and donors, Martha’s Choice Marketplace & Community Farm quickly provided fresh produce and shelf-stable items to thousands of people in Montgomery County.
While the pandemic has normalized, the hunger epidemic is growing. Martha’s Choice is asking for financial donations to continue its work. “In the seven years that we have operated Martha’s Choice Marketplace, we have never seen this current level of sustained community need, even during the height of the pandemic,” said Eli Wenger, director of operations for Martha’s Place.
In 2021, Martha’s Choice served 6,000 individuals. In 2022, it will double those numbers, serving 2 million pounds of food to 12,000 people and more than 3,200 unique families. “The food assistance programs introduced in 2020/2021 to assist folks suffering food insecurity as a result of the pandemic are now gone or being eliminated,” explained Wenger.
Martha’s Choice, which is affiliated with Catholic Social Services of Montgomery County, is trying to fill the need and build community through access to healthy food. In addition to the food pantry, Martha’s Choice grows culturally meaningful food, started a youth mentorship program, and delivers groceries to more than 200 seniors a month.
Of course, Martha’s Choice needs funds to do all of that work. “We have never seen this level of sustained crisis-level food need, even during the height of the pandemic,” said Patrick Walsh, director of programs at Martha’s Choice. “Our numbers continue to grow. So in order for organizations like Martha’s to meet this need, we need everyone to pitch in. We need everyone to see the need our friends and neighbors have, and take part in a community level response to this crisis.”
Please follow this link to donate to Martha’s Choice Marketplace and Farm.
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