WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., March 30, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 4,000 children and families from Boys & Girls Club of Palm Beach County have received a week's supply of farm-fresh produce, dry-goods and other household necessities through a new program called Farm to Family. Fresh RX Kids and Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County created the program earlier this month in less than a week to help families and farmers impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
"I am so thankful to be working with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County," said Margaret Duriez, co-founder of Fresh Rx Kids and Lox Farms. "It's critical that families in need have access to fresh, healthy produce, while supporting our local farms, which are an important part of our food system. I'm grateful to have been able to connect our farms to our families in Palm Beach County during this difficult this time."
Farm to Family ensures that local farmers will stay afloat after the sudden closures of farmers' markets and restaurants. The produce given to local families today likely would have gone to waste if it wasn't for the new food assistance program.
"We are all in this together as a community and helping each other will support those in need through this difficult time," said Maura Plante, M.A., CEO & Founder of Living Hungry, which has served as the food distribution partner for Farm to Family, providing expertise on how to source, store and distribute the food donations. "It's imperative we connect the farmers and families in our area to keep all healthy and safe and to support the larger supply chain in the future."
Distributions of immune-boosting food have occurred at several Boys & Girls Club locations this month including Max M. Fisher Boys & Girls Clubs in Riviera Beach, Marjorie S. Fisher Boys & Girls Club in West Palm Beach and the Belle Glade Teen Center in Belle Grade.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County families are grateful for the extra help during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Club parent Barbara Domand's son just lost his job due to the COVID-19 emergency.
"All of the families here are lucky to have one less thing to worry about during these uncertain times," Dorman said. "The quality of the produce is amazing and will make a big difference for many in our community. Not having to worry about where the next meal is coming from means everything."
Additional locations will continue to be added over the coming weeks to help feed and keep Boys & Girls Clubs families healthy.
"The Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County Board of Directors and leadership is committed to raising the funds necessary to keep our staff employed and maintaining our designation as an essential service to our community," said Jaene Miranda, CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County. "Keeping our kids and their caregivers healthy is crucial, and we are pleased to provide the nutrition necessary to keep up their immune systems through this pandemic."
Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County and Fresh RX Kids created a Go Fund Me page to help fund Farm to Family. The link to donate can be accessed at farmstofamily.org. Donations from the community will support the collection and delivery of fresh produce to help those who need it. Fresh RX Kids' network of local farmers will provide an assortment of freshly-harvested fruits and vegetables. A $30 donation will cover the costs of creating the box and the delivery to local families and children, helping to ensure they have access to healthy, fresh foods.
A number of local partners have come forward to support the Farm to Family program. Partners include Michael Borek Farms, Alderman Farms, Pero Family Farms, Health & Happiness, Chavez Groves, Lox Farms, Gratitude Garden Farm, Holman's Harvest, Harpke Family Farm, Florida Crystals, Palm Beach County Food Bank, Living Hungry, Aioli, Gratitude Gardens, Kai Kai Farms, The Garden Network, Ray's Heritage, and more are signing on daily.
About Fresh RX Kids:
Fresh RX Kids is a local experiential education program for children on the importance of nutrition and healthy eating habits. The program takes place in partnership with local schools and afterschool programs, where garden beds are installed and maintained by Fresh RX Kids. This allows the students to participate in planting, weeding, harvesting, composting as part of their weekly curriculum. The program also teaches children how to prepare the produce they have grown and harvested with cooking classes led by our team chef. The Fresh RX Kids program is part of Fresh RX, a farm-to-hospital initiative that prescribes and fulfills prescriptions of fresh produce free of charge for oncology, cardiac and pediatric patients, who have been advised to change their diets as part of a comprehensive treatment plan. Both programs were developed and supported by Lox Farms, a certified naturally grown farm in Loxahatchee, FL co-founded by Palm Beach resident Margaret Duriez.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County:
Founded in 1971, Boys & Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County is a not-for-profit youth development organization dedicated to promoting the educational, vocational, health, leadership and character of boys and girls in a safe, nurturing environment. The Clubs provide more than a safe, fun and constructive alternative to being home alone – they offer a variety of award-winning developmental programs to help youth build skills, self-esteem and values during critical periods of growth. The 13 Boys & Girls Clubs throughout Palm Beach County serve more than 9,400 children ages 6-18. For more information, please visit www.bgcpbc.org or call 561-683-3287.
SOURCE Fresh RX Kids