Packing up Fresh Box

Blog / Packing up Fresh Box

Casey Hogan, Fresh Box Project Manager, shares a glimpse of the relationships she’s built and perspectives gained working with Fresh Box + About Fresh “doubles down” on healthy food access

  Casey Hogan • 2 min read

I walk into the office and take a look at our call line. Benjamin and I chatted last night after his favorite delivery driver dropped off his Fresh Box, so I know I’ll have a voicemail from him this morning. Benjamin recognizes hard work and good service from years of owning his own business before a stroke forced him to retire. Every time he has a good experience with us, he makes sure to call and tell us who he thinks deserves to be Employee of the Year (and that we should have an Employee of the Year).

It’s Tuesday, so I also have a message from Josephine. I have never met Josephine, but her voice makes my heart light up every time I hear it. She speaks Haitian-Creole, so her son usually calls us when she has a question, but at least once a week, she’ll call herself to say, “Thank you, sister.” and tell us how much she enjoys her Box. 

Thanks to the vaccine rollout, Benjamin and Josephine are among thousands of people and households immunized against COVID-19 every day. Many of them can now go to the store themselves or travel to be with their family. The critical need for our home deliveries is decreasing, which means the end of Fresh Box is in sight. It’s a moment to celebrate and to take a pause. Fresh Box served a population that needed this support before COVID and gave people access to fresh foods they didn’t have before.

I have heard, over and over, from people whose doctors told them to start “eating better,” but they couldn’t afford to. They call and tell us how happy their doctors are after months of cooking with the ingredients in their boxes. Though these individuals may be vaccinated and are not at as high of a risk for COVID, the barriers that affect people’s ability to access fresh, healthy food remain the same. 

.    .    .

Doubling down on our mission

At the pandemic’s peak, 1 in 6 households throughout Boston were food insecure. Rates have since dropped due to the most recent wave of government economic aid. Echoing s a simple fact, when people have money, they feed themselves and their families. Money builds purchasing power and agency to buy and select the foods we need to keep ourselves healthy and nurture our cultures and traditions. Household budgets have long played a critical role in determining access to healthy food.

As we wind down our COVID-response program, we are doubling down on our mission to get healthy food to households who need it through programs like Fresh Connect. As a debit card program that allows healthcare systems to cover healthy food costs for their patients, Fresh Connect gives people money to buy healthy food and purposely partners with healthcare to have a greater impact and influence on purchasing power and agency. We’re committed to ensuring communities have access to healthy food regardless of zip code, household income, or class.

For more information on Fresh Connect or stay up to date on program updates, follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

Blog / Packing up Fresh Box

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