Community Partnership Shares Meals for Those in Need during National Pandemic

This initiative comes from UNE - US Northeast
University of Scranton community program turns citizens’ monetary donations into meals for low income residents through area restaurant partnerships.

Community organizations are partnering with area businesses to provide meals to low-income residents. The Electric City Connection, an effort led by The University of Scranton, Scranton Tomorrow and Friends of the Poor, will accept donations which will then be used by local restaurant partners to supply meals for low-income residents.

Here’s how it works: members of the community are encouraged to donate $15 (via www.scrantontomorrow.org). Funds will be used to purchase $15 gift cards for participating Scranton restaurants to be used for take-out and delivery meal options. Friends of the Poor, which is coordinating emergency food giveaways, will distribute the gift cards to low-income Scranton residents.

“We are seeing tremendous need among families and individuals in our community due to this crisis. We are glad to partner on a program like this that taps into community generosity and also supports our local small businesses,” said Sr. Ann Walsh, IHM, assistant director, Friends of the Poor.

Julie Schumacher Cohen, assistant vice president for community engagement and government affairs, The University of Scranton, developed the program after learning about similar efforts in other cities. “The COVID-19 crisis is creating additional hardship for those who were already experiencing economic insecurity. This program is an effort to support the wellbeing of community members in need and support our local economy here in the City of Scranton,” she said. “We deeply appreciate the collaboration with partner organizations and local restaurant owners – finding ways to connect as a community is what will help get us through this crisis.”

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