A struggle to serve

Thomas Salverson, far right, thanks Heart, Love and Soul staff Chrystallyn Combs, left and Executive Director Sister Beth Bosmer, right, after picking up food with his wife Brandi and son Aidan, 9. The family visited both the lunch line and food pantry.

A 10-day donation drive organized by Niagara University’s Mission Committee and its Levesque Institute for Civic Engagement raised $2,700 to assist three community partners with local food efforts during COVID-19. Community Missions of the Niagara Frontier, Inc.; Heart, Love & Soul, Inc. and the Magdalene Project of Niagara Falls. Each will receive $900 to help as food costs rise and needs escalate as a result of the coronavirus.

Food access needs in Niagara Falls have tripled over the last month due to the pandemic, especially in zip codes like 14301, which is designated as a food desert.

“We are grateful to all those who so graciously donated to the food donation drive to meet this critical need in our local community,” said Patricia Wrobel, executive director of the Levesque Institute. “While volunteer opportunities are limited because of current social distancing requirements, efforts like the donation drive enable us to continue supporting these crucial organizations and the important work that they do.”

“Niagara University’s Mission Committee was honored to take part in such a worthwhile effort,” added Stefanie Wichhart, faculty mission director. “Thank you to the many donors who chose to contribute to this food donation drive. Your support will help to provide food access to our local residents during this trying time.”

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