Some food distributions get OK to continue next month

Photos by Tom Rivers: Toni Barber, a retired Holley kindergarten aide, was among the volunteers who helped with a food distribution this morning at the Holley Junior-Senior High School.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 August 2020 at 12:23 pm

HOLLEY – Organizers of the food distributions on Fridays in Orleans County have been notified the program will continue next month, although Albion will only have one of the distributions instead of two.

The organizers also are looking for other sites for the events in Holley and Medina, instead of the school parking lots. Schools are scheduled to reopen to students early next month and the parking lots won’t be available.

Albion has been offering the distributions on the first and third Fridays, with Medina on the second Friday and Holley on the fourth Friday.

Melissa Blanar, director of the Orleans County Office for the Aging, said she will be working to finalize a schedule. She has been teaming with Community Action of Orleans & Genesee to run the events in Albion and Holley, and with the Calvary Tabernacle Church in Medina.

The Cornell Cooperative Extension in Orleans County also has been hosting food distributions the second and fourth Wednesdays. Robert Batt, the CCE director, said he hasn’t received any notice yet if the Extension will continue as a distribution site next month.

(UPDATE AT 2:32 P.M.: Batt said he has been notified there will be another distribution at the fairgrounds on Sept. 9.)

Iroquois Job Corps Center employees, Ashtin Fiegel (left) and Mark Dickinson, move boxes of dairy and produce to get ready for today’s food distribution in Holley. Several employees from the Iroquois Job Corps in Medina helped at today’s event. Andrew Dreschel, an incoming Holley High School senior, also assisted and is shown in back.

Blanar said the groups won’t be running a distribution next week, the first Friday of September, but she expects they will continue in the week after that.

The food distributions are made possible through a state-funded program called Nourish New York. This funding allows Foodlink to purchase local product.

On a federal level, the USDA has implemented a new initiative called CFAP (Coronavirus Food Assistance Program). In this program, distributors who would normally serve schools, restaurants, and municipal programs are able to pre-pack boxes of perishable product and deliver to distributions being done all over the country.

Krista Fiegel, a Job Corps employee, carries a box of produce to one of the 300-plus vehicles in Holley.

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