Food security is a big concern in Beacon right now, with sudden unemployment and social isolation. In this episode Kara Dean-Assael and Karen George talk about how their non-profit Fareground Community Kitchen is delivering healthy and affordable meals to kitchen tables in Beacon and the surrounding area.
Fareground was founded in 2012 with plans to open a “pay what you can” cafe making the dining out experience accessible to people who couldn’t ordinarily afford it. It was forced to change direction when the storefront it hoped to rent was instead given to another tenant, a disappointment at the time that turned into a blessing as the organization evolved in a new direction.
“In retrospect I really appreciate how we’ve grown,” Kara says. “We’ve been really sleepy until this year. ”
The sleepiness ended when the coronavirus began its rapid spread through the Hudson Valley, causing layoffs and driving people indoors where access to healthy food was uncertain for many. Kara, Karen and their team of partners and volunteers have risen to the challenge, providing hundreds of meals to people in need.
“In the midst of this grave situation that we’re in, it’s been a real light for so many people. We started with 35 [meals] and this weekend we’re packing 300 to-go dinners for distribution on Monday,” she says.