A Letter from Stephen Grimaldi and Margie Sung

“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

 — James Baldwin 


This year has been a time of significant change and growth for New York Common Pantry (NYCP). Nearly 3 million people in New York City (NYC) are struggling to make ends meet.* 50% of working families lack the income to afford basic needs: housing, childcare, food, healthcare, transportation, and miscellaneous items such as clothing and taxes.* This continued hardship means our services are needed more than ever. 


Our reach has never been greater, with nearly 300 sites serving families in communities across NYC, lower Westchester, and parts of Long Island. NYCP assists everyone: working families with children, single mothers, senior citizens living on fixed incomes, the unhoused, and asylum-seekers who are overwhelming the city. Between our brick-and-mortar locations and mobile food deliveries, we’ve distributed more than 10 million meals to people like Sarah, a single, working mother of three young children living in the Bronx. When SNAP cuts took effect in March, Sarah was forced to reduce her budget where she had the most control — on food. Realizing this was neither a healthy nor a long-term solution, she signed up for our Bronx Pantry Program. She is relieved and grateful for the nutritious food we provide for her family. 


In response to increased need, NYCP recently purchased and is renovating a Food Storage and Distribution Hub by the Hunts Point Market in the Bronx. This 23,500 sq. ft. Hub enables us to double our capacity in many ways. We can serve twice as many families and store twice as much food. Purchasing food in bulk saves us 20- 25% in costs. NYCP can rescue even more fresh produce from the Hunts Point Market, benefiting our participants immediately. And larger volunteer groups can sort and pack more fresh food. All these economies of scale will lower our costs, allowing us to reinvest these savings into our food programs. 


We could only have reached these milestones with your unwavering support. NYCP is indebted to you — our donors, volunteers and partners — for enabling us to expand our programs and services that help so many in our communities. 


Thank you for facing these challenges with us and working together to make change.


Stephen Grimaldi, Executive Director
Margie Sung, Board Chair 


* “NYC True Cost of Living Report. April 2023.” Center for Women’s Welfare, University of Washington School of Social Work, for the Fund for the City of New York and the United Way of New York City. www.unitedwaynyc.org/true-cost-of-living/. Accessed 11 September 2023. 

** Ibid.


View New York Common Pantry’s Annual Report 2023.