SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – A major issue that many communities face within the city of Syracuse are food deserts. The United States Department of Agriculture defines food deserts as “geographical areas where residents’ access to affordable, healthy food options is restricted due to the absence of grocery stores within a convenient traveling distance.”
Many communities within Syracuse that struggle with this phenomenon lack access to good, basic grocery stores, and therefore have to rely on food pantries and food drives. At Syracuse University, the Hendricks Chapel Food Pantry collects canned food and produce for local families.
It’s crucial to have good food pantries throughout the city, according to the engagement coordinator at Hendricks Chapel and Syracuse native Kaleya Scott.
“If you’re in a place in a space that’s a food desert in addition to, you know, you don’t necessarily have the resources to give, that’s what the importance of a food pantry is,” she said.
With Thanksgiving right around the corner, Scott said it’s the busiest time for food pantries and food banks. Donations are vital to the local communities of Syracuse, and it’s important to donate if you are able to, Scott said.
“If you have an overflow, you know, what’s in you cup is yours, but the overflow that you have is spilling out, so why not, you know just share it and give it to people, places, and spaces that can help water, you know, their desert,” said Scott.
The Hendricks Chapel Food Pantry is just one of many you can donate to this Thanksgiving. Whether it is food donations or volunteering, all of the information about the food pantry can be found on their website.