The Campaign Against Hunger

A Community Approach to Caring

aka TCAH   |   Brooklyn, NY   |  www.bscahnyc.org

Mission

The Campaign Against Hunger's (TCAH) mission is to empower our neighbors to lead healthier, more productive and self-sufficient lives by increasing their access to safe, nutritious food and related resources.

Ruling year info

2005

Principal Officer

Dr. Melony Samuels

Main address

2010 Fulton St

Brooklyn, NY 11233 USA

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Formerly known as

Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger

Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger

EIN

20-0934854

NTEE code info

Human Service Organizations (P20)

Agricultural, Youth Development (O52)

Food Service, Free Food Distribution Programs (K30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Food insecurity and a lack of healthy options continues to plague low-income New Yorkers living below the poverty line. Approximately 1.4 million rely on food pantries to survive. We assist about 28,500 per month in our supermarket-style food pantry, one of the largest in the city. Our impulse to feed the hungry became a driving mission to confront the the “hunger and obesity paradox.” This phenomenon is seen in food insecure communities where dietary options are severely restricted by a dearth of well-stocked supermarkets and the preponderance of fast food restaurants and poorly stocked corner stores that carry few if any fruits and vegetables or other items supportive of a healthy lifestyle. As a consequence, residents of these food deserts are deprived of choices and suffer much higher rates of heart disease, diabetes and other chronic diseases, Our commitment to ending hunger, increasing access to healthy foods and nutrition education guides our innovative programs.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Green Teens Internship Program

TCAH's Green Teen Internship Program (GTIP) is a workforce development and training program for local at-risk and disconnected youth ages 14 -22 who are out of school and unemployed. The program immerses youth in the real world operation of TCAH's thriving urban farms in Brooklyn and Far Rockaway, Queens. Youths are trained in sustainable agriculture, horticulture, and entrepreneurship to put them on pathways to living wages and careers in the burgeoning green sector and STEM industries.

Population(s) Served

Each year, TCAH closes the hunger gap for over 300,000 New Yorkers who are struggling with food insecurity. We tackle hunger and poverty using a layered, multi-tiered approach to empower our neighbors to live healthier lives. Whether it is through our benefits access programs, urban farms, weekly farmers markets designed to allow low-income resident to access healthy, nutrient-dense produce, internship programs for teens, free summer youth programs, senior citizen clubs or daily access to needed food, the connections between TCAH and the community are invaluable. For individuals and families who have historically been unable to provide for themselves independently, a trip to TCAH for emergency food has the possibility to turn into a major shift in empowerment. For this, we have earned longstanding trust among our most at-risk neighbors.

Population(s) Served

WHSP provides homeless elementary school children in eight public schools in Central Brooklyn with nutritious meals and snacks when they do not have access to free school lunch

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Having recognized that food security is a profound social determinant of health and well-being of a community, BSCAH has developed a signature approach to achieving our mission. It is a business model that entails introducing or reintroducing residents of food deserts to real, nutritious, and locally grown fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods in ways that honor everyday personal struggles, promote social awareness, and, ultimately, stimulate the shifts in mindset and changes in behavior necessary to sustain lifelong healthy eating. We aim to educate those who rely on food pantries to survive about the importance of healthy eating and cooking to improve their own and their families health outcomes.

since the pantry is our most effective distribution point, it also serves as a gateway to supportive services. To insure that our pantry patrons’ needs are addressed holistically, prior to entry each first-time shopper is screened for and enrolled in benefits programs (such as SNAP and affordable health insurance), assessed for referrals to partnering agencies (such as health care providers), and/or signed up for our free education programs or tax preparation service.
We grow our support base and create our own buzz by walking our talk and by implementing “each-one-teach-one” educational solutions that develop in our clients transferable skills as discriminating, self-advocating food consumers. Our current array of services and supportive programs are designed to:

- Increase access to fresh and healthy produce;
- Increase awareness and knowledge of the importance of nutrition and healthy eating;
- Promote environmental stewardship among children and youth; and
- Foster sustainable food security through advocacy, activism and community leadership.

The expected long-term impact of our work is the reduction in prevalence of and morbidity from diet-related chronic diseases like obesity, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes.

Our key healthy food distribution initiatives are our Superpantry, mobile pantry and the newest addition to our mobile fleet, our traveling farmers market, Fresh Vibes Market. Our mobile services allow us to provide access to nutritious food for those who are currently isolated by geographic, socioeconomic and sociopolitical barriers, including the elderly and undocumented immigrants. In 2017 these expanding services (soon to be a fleet of 4 vehicles) distributed enough food for approximately 1.5 million meals at key stops in Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx.

Our nutrition education programs are all hands-on, interactive community based and designed to bring participants into our two thriving urban farms, Saratoga Farm located on the cusp of Brownsville and Bed-Stuy in Central Brooklyn and the Farm at Far Rock, on the border of Edgemere and Arverne in Far Rockaway, Queens. These are youth-led enterprises managed by our Green Teens Internship Program members. Our farms produce over 21,000 pounds and 100 different varieties of certified naturally grown fruits and vegetables each year while our two chicken coops yield 16,000 free-range eggs, all funneled to the community.

Health 360 is a comprehensive wellness program for senior citizens that meets for 8 weekly sessions and encourages socializing and mutual support while teaching basic gardening and healthy cooking techniques. We offer it on site and at 13 different senior centers located primarily in NYCHA buildings.

Our popular Healthy Communities Healthy Families program is an intergenerational cooking and dinner series held two nights each week, it provides a space where families learn, cook and eat together and they take home a bag of ingredients and the night's recipes.

Our youth education initiative is divided into three programs: Healthy Bloomers, our free summer program for elementary school-age children, Stomp Out Obesity, where pre-teen students learn about hunger, community empowerment and gain the building blocks for a healthy lifestyle and our Green Teens Internship Program, a consistently high impact leadership initiative focused on developing knowledge of nutrition and agriculture and building a generation of food justice ambassadors.

We are unique amongt emergency feeding programs as our “SuperChoice Pantry" is open 5 days per week including extended hours to accommodate the working poor. We also offer on-site live cooking demos and plenty of free samples in our pantry daily using the produce of the day.

Our free seasonal income-tax services generated close to five million dollars of tax refunds for the community in the past 24 months. We recently added Operation Youth Empowerment to the mix, a job readiness and internship program for ages 16-24 who are not attending any school, program or working.

Across all of our services and programs, BSCAH served 306,000 unduplicated clients in 2017, that’s over 30,000 persons that we both feed and educate per month.

Given where and how we started and our current size, the fact that BSCAH now serves as many people and produces and distributes as much food as we do is testament to our commitment, efficiency, and effectiveness. BSCAH has an active, 10-member Board of Directors and a 26-member staff, which includes seventeen full-time and nine part-time employees, the majority of whom helped to build the organization from the ground up. In addition, we employ 40 seasonal workers (including Green Teen interns) and mobilize a corps of roughly 20 regular and 100 on-call volunteers. The organization is guided by the visionary leadership of Dr. Melony Samuels, who is our founder and executive director. Dr. Samuels brings more than 20 years of experience in hunger relief and as a community leader. Well-respect in all quarters, Dr. Samuels has served on the Steering Committees for both the Manhattan Borough President and the Politics of Food Conference and currently sits on the Governor’s Vital Brooklyn Task Force. Dr. Samuels’ second in command is Ms. Tamara Dawson, BSCAH’s Director of Programs. Ms. Dawson, who holds a Bachelor degree in Marketing from Berkeley College of Business, and has experience in corporate marketing and business development, currently supports the development and training of 17 staff members and has overseen all BSCAH’s program growth since 2006. Ms. Dawson currently sits on the Junior Board of the Food Bank for New York City.

Across all of our services and programs, BSCAH served over 306,000 unduplicated clients enough food for over 3 million meals annually in 2017, that’s an average of over 25,500 persons that we both feed and educate per month. Our various programs and services have earned BSCAH and its leadership tremendous social capital and recognition for outstanding contribution to the community and the City. Among the awards received are: the Brooklyn Community Foundation's Place of Compassion Award, the Food Bank's Agency of the Year Award (received twice), and an award from the Food Bank for NYC for highest number of completed referrals. In June of 2017, WhyHunger, a national leader in building the movement to end hunger and poverty, honored BSCAH with the Chapin Award. TCAH was also a finalist for the Brooklyn Community Foundation’s Spark Prize for Innovation awarded in December, 2017 and currently, is a finalist, once again for the Spark Prize.

In 2018, to date, BSCAH hosted or conducted 603 workshops including those delivered through these key programs: a) Healthy Families Healthy Communities, a weekly two-hour dinner initiative for intergenerational families; b) Health 360, a wellness club for seniors; c) Healthy Bloomers, our summer program for children ages 4-11, which uses art, farming and cooking classes to make a wide selection of fruits and vegetables familiar; and d) Chef’s Corner, our on-site healthy cooking demonstrations that teach alternative cooking techniques. Cooking demonstrations are BSCAH’s most popular means of engaging and teaching participants about nutrition, health, and healthy cooking techniques. The learning is achieved imperceptibly while a variety of aromatic, delicious, and healthy free samples of the day’s fresh farm produce and items available in the pantry are used to create culturally-relevant, local favorite meals that can be easily replicated at home. Cooking demos are an effective way to initiate fruitful and important conversations and to expose participants to a wide variety of familiar and unfamiliar produce, prepared in new and exciting ways. This new ease with healthy food eliminates any associated stigma and stimulates real changes in behavior. Participants in our cooking demos, when surveyed subsequently, report a sustained increase in their use and consumption of fruits and vegetables.
Earlier this year, BSCAH launched its new Fresh Vibes Market/Urban Fresh Connect On the Go vehicle, a state-of-the-art vehicle that was purchased and fully equipped through funding from the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office. This highly visible vehicle is seen as a primary mechanism for insuring the availability of healthy foods to New Yorkers with the highest need, including the elderly, school children, perinatal mothers and young children, new and undocumented immigrants, and residents of New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) developments.

Financials

The Campaign Against Hunger
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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The Campaign Against Hunger

Board of directors
as of 4/13/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Aneudys Mejia

AMS Tax and Credit Solutions LLC

Term: 2017 - 2019

Michael Woolley

Private Attorney

Constance Finlayson

The MIXX

Earl Phillips

TWU Local 100

Joshua Lukeman

Credit Suisse

William Frick

BNY Mellon

Leo Garrick

Popular Community Bank,

Randall Atkinson

TD Bank

Belynda Gardner

The Skimm

Nikolay Grishakov

Digital Logistics Inc.,

Roberts Rciahrd

Red Stone Equity Partners

O’Shane Dell

JP Morgan Chase

Steven Turner

Attorney