NEWBURGH – On Thursday, August 20, Catholic Charities of Orange, Sullivan, and Ulster partnered with Catholic Charities of New York’s Immigration and Refugee Services to host their second food distribution and resources fair in Newburgh – the first took place in July.
The event, held in front of 280 Broadway, featured a pop-up food pantry and the opportunity for community members to sign-up for immigration consultations and health screenings. Other available resources included a back to school backpack sign up courtesy of TEAM Newburgh, as well as free bi-lingual NARCAN training, and information about local case management and eviction prevention services.
The community focused event was free and open to the public and all attendees wore face coverings and social distancing was enforced.
Grace Kurland, Coordinating Attorney for the Lower Hudson Valley at Catholic Charities, said the event was created in response to the rising food insecurity caused by the pandemic. “We started out just wanting to do a food pantry, like a pop-up food pantry. But then, other people asked if they could join in and then all these community providers joined in, which turned it into a much bigger event, that we hope to be able to do on a more regular basis.”
Julie Ubinas, Orange County Reginal Supervisor for Catholic Charities added, “It’s wonderful to see all of the non-profit agencies and organizations within the City of Newburgh come together to provide services for those that are in need.”
Jackie Perez, Senior Program Supervisor for Hudson Valley Community Services was on hand giving out valuable information to attendees. The non-profit covers multiple counties in the Hudson Valley and meets people where they are with a mobile unit. Perez talked about some of its services, including the syringe exchange program. “The Syringe Exchange Program has a goal to decrease the spread of blood born diseases such has HIV and Hep-C. We provide a lot of harm reduction supplies such as safer injection supplies, safer sex kits and sharps containers.” They also do testing for Hepatitis C and HIV, as well as Narcan training and multiple education trainings.