The summer is a usually a quiet time at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus.
But on a recent weekday morning, there was plenty of work to do in the McGinley Center kitchen. Standing in front of a stainless steel prep table in the kitchen’s prep area, Miriam Peters assembled turkey sandwiches, which she sealed and bagged along with oranges, juice boxes and bags of potato chips. When she was done, Peters collected the lunches in a large plastic bag and put the bag on a cart, ready to be taken out for delivery.
The next day, the bag lunches were picked up by workers from City Harvest and distributed around the Bronx to school children as part of Sodexo’s “Feeding Our Future” program.
The rationale behind the program is simple, according to Sodexo: there aren’t a lot of hungry students on campus, but there are still plenty of hungry children in the nearby neighborhoods. The “Feeding Our Future” program, established in 1996, is on the verge of hitting 1 million meals. Lunches are delivered to Boys and Girls’ clubs, food banks or YMCA’s; the cost is covered by a non-profit foundation set up by Sodexo in 1999. Although it’s offered in 20 cities around the country, Fordham’s is the only one the company operates in New York City.
Abir Roychoudhury, operations director of Sodexo food services at Fordham, said the University has been working with City Harvest for about seven years. Their van arrives every weekday at 9 a.m. at Rose Hill to pick up, on average, 300 lunches a day.
“Our goal is to provide healthy, nutritious lunches that kids will eat,” he said. “We walk a fine line between healthy and nutritious and the comfort items that kids like.”