Queens youths will stay busy this summer delivering food to seniors through a new cross-borough initiative.
The 100 Suits’ “Senior Deliveries and Culinary Program” Youth Initiative, which began July 1 and runs through the first week of September, will pay teenagers in Southeast Queens to prepare and deliver food to seniors, a press release announcing the program said.
It is an initiative of Acting Queens Borough President Sharon Lee and 100 Suits for 100 Men, a nonprofit that helps underprivileged men and women attain economic stability.
“This cross-borough partnership to provide employment opportunities and life lessons for our youth, while helping feed seniors in need, represents the best of Queens,” said Lee. “We are deeply grateful to all the partners responsible for bringing such a creative program to life.”
The program is designed for team building, culinary skills, operational skills and more –– all while preparing freshly-made, nutritious meals for seniors, the release said.
It is open to teenagers ages 15 to 19 in Southeast Queens. Those teenagers prepare 140 meals every Wednesday. The food is then delivered to seniors on Thursdays. Between 100-110 meals are delivered to seniors in Rochdale Village. The teens also meet remotely on Fridays for discussions and guest speakers who discuss financial literacy and more.
The Rochdale Village Board of Directors President Jean Randolph-Castro applauded the initiative saying it was tackling two important issues at once.
“The importance of this partnership with 100 Suits and Kevin Livingston is in empowering our youth, enabling them to learn a great trade with stability,” said Randolph-Castro. “Just as important and humbly rewarding is feeding Rochdale Village seniors during the COVID-19 crisis, ensuring their health and well-being through healthy eating and improving their quality of life.”
100 Suits’ “Senior Deliveries and Culinary Program” Youth Initiative came together through a mix of financial and logistical partnerships. The meals are prepared at the teaching kitchen at Forestdale, Inc. in Forest Hills and the ingredients are donated and delivered weekly by Kommissary LIC, a Long Island City based commercial kitchen..
It was funded by Borough President Lee, Patrick B. Jenkins & Associates and Feel Beauty Supply in Jamaica. Colin Kaepernick’s Know Your Rights Camp provided financial support and personal protective equipment (PPE).
“This is a clear example of the community creating its own opportunities, and that’s what we’ve done here with our partners,” said 100 Suits Founder Kevin Livingston. “Teamwork makes the dream work.”