Princeton University kicks off second year of Summer Food and Nutrition Program to address pandemic-related food insecurity in Mercer County

Monday, Jun 14, 2021

by the Office of Communications

To address food insecurity in local communities due to the pandemic, Princeton University’s Campus DiningHuman ResourcesOffice of Community and Regional Affairs and John H. Pace, Jr. ’39 Center for Civic Engagement established the Summer Food and Nutrition Program in 2020. This summer, the initiative continues and includes collaborations with three area nonprofits to provide meals for at-risk families, children and individuals.

The Summer Food and Nutrition Program 2021 began June 7 and runs through July 2. The program offers continuity of employment, including health benefits, to Campus Dining employees who normally work for nine months a year.

Campus Dining’s culinary team, led by Tommy Thothongkum and Brian Driscoll, executive chefs, and Brian Schoenbeck, executive pastry chef, have put together the menus and along with their teams are producing approximately 3,800 meals a week to be distributed to people in surrounding communities.

Campus Dining team members Orlando Griffiths, retail food service worker (left); Marie Deravil, retail food service worker; and Maria Datuin, operations manager, prepare bagged meals in one of Princeton’s dining facilities.

Photo by Jennifer Perri, catering manager, Campus Dining, University Services

The University has longstanding relationships with the partner organizations: HomeFront, the Rescue Mission of Trenton and Trenton Area Soup Kitchen. The community reach of these nonprofits includes children; families; veterans; those experiencing homelessness; and people living in shelter, living alone, and living at and above the poverty line. The demographic reach includes Asian Americans, Blacks, Hispanics and whites. The geographic reach spans Mercer Country — including Princeton, the Route 1 corridor closest to Princeton, Trenton, Lawrence, East Windsor, West Windsor and Hightstown.

Read full article on the University's homepage