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$1,500 grant to feed local children who are food insecure

ISLANDIA – Hundreds of children will enjoy a healthy meal thanks to Suffolk OTB and Jake’s 58 Charitable Giving Program. The program donated $1,500 to Longwood Blessings, which provides weekend meals to students experiencing food insecurity in Medford, Gordon Heights, Shirley, Ridge, Middle Island and Coram. This generosity will provide local children with 300 Hunger free weekends.

“Trisha Ewald and her team at Blessings in a Backpack are warriors for children faced with food insecurity,” said Phil Boyle, president and CEO of Suffolk OTB. “Suffolk OTB’s Charitable Giving Program always seeks to maximize its community impact and we are pleased to support their fight to end childhood hunger.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that in 2020, 14.8 percent of households with children were food insecure. May youngsters on Long Island would go hungry without the assistance of such programs as Longwood Blessing in a Backpack, which makes sure students take home healthy meals to make it through the weekend.

“I was thrilled to be able to connect Jake’s 58 with such an amazing nonprofit like Longwood Blessing in a Backpack,” said Suffolk County Leg. Sarah Anker (D-Mt. Sinai). “Trisha Ewald and her team under the national organization, Blessings in a Backpack, provide food to elementary students who are experiencing food insecurity in the Longwood Central School District. Thanks to Jake’s 58 and its generous grant, Blessings will be able to provide 300 hunger-free weekends.”

Currently, the Longwood Blessings feeds 468 children every week. Children who experience long-term food insecurity develop more slowly, have trouble learning and have difficulty focusing in class, reports They are more prone to illness and tend to be hospitalized more frequently than those from food secure homes. They also can experience behavioral issues that include being less likely to be social or participate in activities in school and out.

Trisha Ewald stated “Longwood Blessings is extremely grateful to Phil Boyle of Suffolk OTB and the charitable-giving team of Jake’s 58 for the generous donation of $1,500.00. A special thanks to Legislator Sarah Anker for her role in making this happen. As a result of this recognition, Longwood Blessings will provide 300 hunger-free weekends to food insecure elementary students of the Longwood Central School District. Since Longwood Blessings is a part of the national non-profit organization Blessings in a Backpack, it must fundraise to provide food. Please consider joining us for our next fundraising event, a casino night with “funny money” at The Meadow Club in Port Jefferson Station on May 19th, 2023.”

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