Hudson – Open Table, the Concord and Maynard charity dedicated to fighting hunger and building healthy communities, and the Hudson Health Department have joined in a new partnership to pilot the Open Table Mobile Pantry Service at three locations in Hudson. Made possible by the Osterman Family Foundation, the new initiative seeks to alleviate food insecurity with visits to two residential complexes operated by the Hudson Housing Authority as well as the Hudson Boys and Girls Club.
The Hudson Health Department has identified populations that are currently food insecure – elderly and disabled residents who reside at the Hudson Housing Authority and youth and their families who participate at the Hudson Boys and Girls Club. The department estimates that the Mobile Pantry will serve between 70 and 100 of Hudson’s most vulnerable residents. The program supplements the efforts of the Hudson Community Food Pantry, which acknowledges there are challenges to reaching the entire community, such as the lack of transportation.
Drop offs will be scheduled on Wednesdays once a month: mid-afternoon at Brigham Circle; mid-afternoon at Norma Oliver Village, 4 Glen Road; and 6 p.m. at the Hudson Boys and Girls Club, 21 Church St.
“I want to congratulate the town of Hudson for partnering with the Open Table Mobile Food Pantry program, to provide healthy, fresh food to Hudson Housing Authority residents, and low-income families who belong to the Hudson Boys and Girls Club,” said State Senator Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton). “I was proud to secure a Senate earmark a few years ago to allow Open Table to purchase a food truck that has made this partnership possible, and have worked closely with Open Table over the past few months, to develop partnerships to address food insecurity in the Hudson-Marlborough area.”
“The mobile pantry will be especially helpful for seniors and individuals with disabilities, as many of them have limited or no access to a vehicle making it difficult to get to a pantry or grocery store,” said Kali Coughlan, Mass in Motion program coordinator, Town of Hudson, Board of Health. “The mobile food pantry services program will have a major impact on the lives of many Hudson residents and in doing so will meet a currently unmet need of some of the community’s most vulnerable populations: the elderly, families with children, and people with disabilities.”
Many of the Hudson Housing Authority residents are in dire need of a food service where they can obtain food without having to venture far from their homes. A large percentage of these residents do not own or have access to a vehicle or are otherwise unable to drive a vehicle. Many of the elderly and disabled residents are house-bound and/or mobility impaired and cannot leave their apartments, let alone make a trip to the grocery store or to the local food pantry. Lastly, some simply do not have the funds to purchase enough groceries to meet their nutritional needs.
“The Open Table Mobile Food Pantry Service Program is designed to meet the needs of food insecure populations with serious mobility issues,” said Jeanine Calabria, executive director, Open Table, Inc. “This partnership with the Hudson Housing Authority illustrates just how effectively our Mobile Pantry can bring food to people who need it most. We are delighted to bring the Open Table Mobile Pantry to vulnerable populations in Hudson.”