As an ongoing initiative, BAPS Charities in conjunction with BAPS Shayona has been regularly distributing thousands of hot vegetarian meals to healthcare providers, law enforcement, and firefighters across the state of New Jersey and New York City. As the United States is being challenged with the COVID-19 pandemic, food accessibility has become a concern, especially frontline personnel working long hours. Harnessing the collective spirit of its volunteers, BAPS Charities provided support to frontline workers of 19 organizations by delivering over 4,000 hot meals to them.
Dr. Rajesh Verma, Director of Emergency Medicine, Kings County Hospital, Brooklyn, NY, thanked BAPS Charities for the meals and explained, “hospital staff is working long shifts, 12 – 24 hours, and I am so moved by this gesture.” Dr. Vipul Patel, BAPS Charities volunteer, has been delivering meals to hospitals on his days off work and shared, “I tangibly see how hard my fellow healthcare providers are working and I am honored to serve them, and alongside them.” Cecelia Martinez, Volunteer Services, New York Presbyterian Hospital, said, “we are really humbled by the good wishes and amazing food we received that uplifts the morale of the hospital and medical staff.”
Dr. Noorain Mazhar, Saint Francis Medical Center, Trenton, NJ, received many of her meals from BAPS Charities while working at the hospital and expressed, “I really appreciate the exceptional efforts of BAPS Charities during these pressing times. The food is delicious and it’s always on time.” Diane Grillo, Administrator, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Hamilton, NJ, informed BAPS Charities that many units at the hospital have greatly benefited from the meals, especially since the hospital does not receive many food deliveries on the weekend.
Firefighters at the New York Fire Department, Engine 273, Ladder 129, all came outside to greet BAPS Charities volunteers and in almost unison chorused, “thank you BAPS Charities for taking care of us.” Lieutenant Mike Polaski, Office of Emergency Management, Robbinsville, NJ, also expressed appreciation to BAPS Charities and its volunteers for distributing food to the Robbinsville Township Police and Fire Departments.
Volunteers in BAPS Charities locations across the world continue to evaluate situations to effectively provide support.
The following beneficiaries were served:
- Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Hamilton, NJ
- Capital Health Hospitals, Hopewell and Trenton, NJ
- Saint Francis Medical Center, Trenton, NJ
- Hackensack Meridian Health JFK Medical Center, Edison, NJ
- Hackensack Meridian Health Raritan Bay Medical Center, Old Bridge, NJ
- Jersey City Medical Center, Jersey City, NJ
- Flushing Hospital Medical Center, Flushing, NY
- New York Presbyterian Hospital, Queens, NY
- Kings County Hospital Center, Brooklyn, NY
- Interfaith Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY
- New York Police Department, Flushing, NY
- Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY
- Brookdale Hospital Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY
- New York Fire Department, Engine 273, Ladder 129, Queens, NY
- Edison Township Police Department, NJ
- New Jersey State Police, Cranbury, NJ
- Robbinsville Township Police Department, NJ
- Robbinsville Township Fire Department, NJ
- West Windsor Township, Health Department, NJ