Nine months into a global pandemic, food insecurity continues to soar for local families and restaurant revenue is declining due to COVID-19 protocols.
With these increasing needs and challenges, particularly during the holiday season, organizers of the Electric City Connection are once again seeking community support. This unique project serves a dual purpose: every donation supports families in need while providing an economic boost to local restaurants, both of which are suffering severe economic setbacks due to COVID-19.
The Electric City Connection is a collaborative effort between The University of Scranton, Scranton Tomorrow and Friends of the Poor. During the holiday season, organizers are asking anyone who is in a position to help to make a $15 donation via Scranton Tomorrow’s website. Contributions will be used to purchase gift cards and meals from Scranton restaurants. Friends of the Poor will distribute gift cards to families in need, and participating restaurants will provide meals to facilities that are home to senior citizens and members of underserved communities in Scranton.
This latest outreach effort marks the third phase in the project’s history. The Electric City Connection project was first launched in the spring at the onset of the pandemic. Members of the community contributed $15 donations to fund the purchase of gift cards to local restaurants. Friends of the Poor distributed the gift cards to Scranton families in need. With the award of a $20,000 grant from Scranton Area Community Foundation, the project continued through the summer, and expanded to include senior citizens and members of underserved communities in Scranton.
Between March and October, nearly 500 donors contributed to the project, providing thousands of meals to those in need. Organizers have been touched by the generosity of the community this year, and look forward to offering more critical support to those who need it most during this season of giving.