PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — COVID-19 has illuminated the issue of food insecurity that Philadelphia faces. One food giveaway event wants to help those struggling with it — with a touch of Philly pride.
The "We Are Philly" food boxes are part of a project started four months ago by restaurateur Rob Wasserman, who created T-shirts with the words "We Are Philly" written on them that has raised money to pay for the boxes.
“You know, the idea is to buy a T-shirt, show your Philly pride and at the same time help your Philly neighbor,” Wasserman explained.
The idea of helping others through the pandemic came to him through his friend Marcello Giordano of Giordano Garden Groceries.
“Our main business was wholesale to restaurants and we became paralyzed when all of this took place. All the restaurants shut down. Restaurants like Rob’s and Stephen Starr’s. So we did a variety box that fit the need and it went crazy,” Giordano said.
Wasserman said they’ve already purchased $90,000 worth of boxes.
Councilmember Alan Domb is helping Wasserman identify distribution locations throughout the city.
”We had food insecurity in the city before COVID, and COVID just compounded the problem,” Domb said.
The boxes were being distributed through city-related COVID-19 relief, which ended last month.
Now, they’ll be independently distributing the boxes weekly. To find the distribution locations, visit their Instagram account we.are.philly.