Horace Greeley High School student recognized by Senator Harckham for her work to help fight food insecurity in Northern Westchester
On August 28th, New York State Senator Pete Harckham held a virtual awards ceremony on Zoom recognizing Caroline Gershman, a rising senior, high school and club soccer player at Horace Greeley High School, for her community service work in helping to fight food insecurity in Northern Westchester for the past year-and-a half.
Caroline Gershman, who lives in Chappaqua, has been helping to alleviate food insecurity before COVID hit and now during COVID with her service project that she calls, “Kick Hunger in Westchester.”
This past winter Caroline created a “hot-food harvest” by going to local restaurants and food stores with hot food bars asking if they would donate some of their food that remains from the evening to help feed homeless guests that are hosted by the local non-profit organization, Emergency Shelter Partnership (ESP), whose member congregations, including First Congregational Church in Chappaqua, house homeless guests for the night.
Through her outreach, Caroline was able to get enough food donated for 150 hot meals during the winter. Local businesses including Quaker Hill Tavern in Chappaqua, Green Way Markets in Cross River and Horse & Hound in South Salem were very supportive in providing meals for the evenings.
In addition, Caroline recently concluded a food drive at Green Way Markets to benefit the Mount Kisco Interfaith Food Pantry. She also created two online campaigns where she has raised a total of $1,740 to benefit the Mount Kisco Interfaith Food Pantry and Emergency Shelter Partnership to help address food insecurity in Northern Westchester.
Caroline said, “I wanted to be able to contribute in some way…the most important thing is spreading awareness about food insecurity in our area.” Senator Harckham said, “For you (Caroline) as a young person to recognize the issue of food insecurity is incredibly important and incredibly astute and … this pandemic has cut people off from the traditional supports and when the economy shut down, they had nothing. The fact that you were there to help and fill those gaps is nothing short of incredible.”