Bed Stuy Campaign Against Hunger (Brooklyn, NY)

Name

  • Name:Dr. Melony Samuels
  • Title:Executive Director

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:Bed Stuy Campaign Against Hunger
  • Address:2010 Fulton Street
    Brooklyn, NY 11233
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:718.773.3551
  • Main fax:347.240.9736

Organization Web

User Email

Location

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General

  • Mission:
  • The mission of Bed Stuy Campaign Against Hunger (BSCAH) is to end hunger and poverty by distributing food and empowering people through information and support, giving strength and dignity to the community.

  • Overview:
  • Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger (BSCAH) is a non-profit organization working vigorously to end hunger and poverty in the Bedford Stuyvesant, Brownsville,Ocean Hill neighborhoods of Brooklyn, and now in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy BSCAH provides emergency food relief through our satellite pantry, mobile market and urban farm in Far Rockaway New York. Valued by community members and continuing to provide the basic staples of a well-balanced diet to more than 30,000 low-income individuals a month, it is our mission is to empower our neighbors in leading healthier, more productive and self sufficient lives by increasing their access to nutritious food and related resources. BSCAH works daily not only to prevent hunger in our community, but to also ensure that our neighbors emerge with a strong sense of dignity.
    Our community faces multiple risks and harms: including high levels of poverty, household hazards, health risks and institutions such as schools that do not advance the population sufficiently. Over 80% of the school children are eligible for free or reduced lunch, and over half of the community lives with some kind of income assistance. Health conditions such as obesity, heart disease, cancer, HIV/AIDS, hypertension and asthma are more prevalent here than for the general NYC population and life expectancy is lower. Families in this community do not have sufficient access to healthy food options, and are flooded with fast food restaurants and corner stores that provide minimal if any access to fresh affordable produce. Our community suffers from a lack of opportunities for residents to have access to healthy foods. A 2006 study by the NYC Department of Mental Health and Hygiene of neighborhoods like Bedford-Stuyvesant and Bushwick, Brownsville and East NY found that 80% of food stores in the neighborhood were bodegas. Bodegas sell fewer healthy options: only 33% of bodegas sells reduced-fat milk, 28% of bodegas carry apples, oranges, and bananas, and only 10% sell leafy green vegetables. Storefront advertisements heavily promote unhealthy products, such as sugary juices, energy drinks, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco.

    The above harms and risks have a profound and lasting adverse impact on the Central Brooklyn population. The adverse impact of the lack of access to healthy food is evident in the prevalence of every marker for poor health in the Brownsville population. Life expectancy in Brownsville is eight years less than in NYC in general. One in three adults in Central Brooklyn neighborhoods including Brownsville have diabetes (rates that are 50% above the NYC average). Over 1/3 of all children of color in Brooklyn, and a higher percentage of children in Brownsville, are overweight or obese. The top five causes of death in Brownsville are heart disease, cancer, HIV/AIDS, stroke, and hypertension/renal disease. Almost a third of the approximately 1,500 births to Brownsville residents in 2009 were to women who were obese prior to pregnancy (compared to 16.5% city-wide); infant mortality rates in Brownsville (11.3 deaths per 1000 births) are over twice that of NYC as a whole. Most community members in Brownsville are on some kind of income assistance (most often Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program- SNAP), are unlikely to be able to buy food other than the cheapest, most readily available food. In response, few children understand the importance or pleasure of eating fresh fruits and vegetables and often see these foods as foreign. Despite these various barriers to health and improved quality of life Central Brooklyn is blessed with a history of activism and community members supporting each other during difficult times. Organizations like BSCAH grew out of that history and continue to be committed to providing crucial services, and activating community members around a number of initiatives that improve the conditions of the community overall.

  • History:

  • We began in 1998 as a small traditional food pantry operating out of a church basement; we are now the largest pantry in New York City. BSCAH has evolved into a customer choice program that fosters self-reliance and independence. A wide range of nutrition education and social services are also provided by BSCAH to help customers overcome what are often generations of poverty, poor nutrition and reliance on local bodegas and fast food. After six years of nutrition workshops, cooking demos, garden classes and collaboration, BSCAH has been successful in changing the way families eat by providing a well-balanced diet to more than 12,000 unduplicated, low-income individuals each month, and over 600,000 pounds of produce each year.

    Our growth over the last 15 years is not just a reflection of difficult economic times, but is demonstrative of our commitment to meeting the needs of our most vulnerable community members, and by the trust the thousands of community members who utilize our services and engage in our programming every day bestow upon us. The staff, and volunteers at BSCAH work tirelessly everyday to uphold our commitment to fighting hunger full force and to providing care and dignity in our services and programs. BSCAH sees the potential for the Robert Wood Johnson Health Prize to help share our community driven model and approach to other communities, to educate us further on food and community education opportunities, that in the long term will help us continue to research, assess and implement innovative practices in emergency food services that galvanize community health directly to the fight against hunger and obesity with dignity and compassion for us all.



  • Year established:1998
  • Endowment:Unknown

Staff

  • Executive / Trustee board size:13
  • Advisory board size:
  • Staff size:12

Registration

  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:None
  • Tax ID:

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