In this our second Charity Spotlight, and the first of 2021, we continue our focus on the critical and tragic issue of food insecurity and an organization that has been tenaciously battling hunger in our local community since they were formed in 2016. The North Brooklyn Angels (Angels) are a volunteer-powered, hyper-local grassroots non-profit working to fight hunger, food insecurity, and poverty in our community.
The Angels began their service in June 2017, powered with a 40 ft. mobile soup kitchen made possible thanks to the generous donations and support of the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island and Norm and Elaine Brodsky. The ‘Angelmobile’ hit the road serving hot meals six days a week at various locations around the community. In their first six months, over 13,000 meals were served. Through the magnanimous support from the Brodsky’s, Msgr. Jamie Gigantiello, and local restauranteur Josh Cohen, they opened a state-of-the-art commercial kitchen in January 2018.
Located in the Parish Hall of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, the kitchen is command central and where volunteers enthusiastically cook and prepare all the meals for distribution. Led by Kitchen Captains, Donna Sinetar and Josh Cohen, in the first six months of operation, the volunteer Angels increased production by over 50 percent, cooking and serving over 20,000 meals. The Angels have received additional significant donations from businesses, organizations and individuals alike allowing them to continue to expand their reach; a Honda minivan from the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets, a cargo van from the Brooklyn Roasting Company and from Bombas 5,000 pair of socks that the Angels have distributed to those in need along with other hygiene products.
When the pandemic hit our City, the Angel team jumped into high gear to meet demand. They have gone from 1,000 pre-pandemic meals served per week to between 2,000 - 3,000. In addition, they have held fundraisers for special projects to address the unprecedented need caused by the pandemic.
Operation Neighbors Feeding Heroes: Two month operation during the height of the pandemic. Angels prepared and served the healthcare workers at Woodhull Hospital breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week – a total of more than 27,000 meals.
Operation Neighbors Giving Thanks: Four day operation to provide Thanksgiving meals to neighbors amid the ongoing pandemic. The ambitious project included the distribution of 1,500 turkey’s, over 1,000 holiday meals at the Angels' outposts, serving 400 socially-distanced Thanksgiving Day meals at the Brooklyn Expo Center, and delivering meals to 100 homebound neighbors and seniors.
And their efforts continue. With a strong and committed coalition, leadership team, cast of amazing volunteers, and donors the Angels continue the fight to combat hunger and food insecurity in our community. Broadway Stages is proud to support the Angels and we invite you to join us. Together we can! Learn more about the North Brooklyn Angels, how to donate or volunteer.