David Arquette surprised more than 50 mothers and their children when he showed up in the Bronx to distribute hundreds of free containers of Plum Organics baby food.
Internet retailer ecomom, which partnered with Arquette in 2012, sponsored the giveaway at the Women’s Housing and Economic Development Corporation in Mount Eden. Nancy Biberman, WHEDco’s founder and president, described herself as “delighted,” explaining that since the Bronx is a food desert, “getting fresh produce can be a real challenge.”
Living in a food deserts, or a “low-income census tract where a substantial number or share of residents has low access to a supermarket or large grocery store,” as defined by the Healthy Food Financing Initiative Working Group, affects the health and well being of Americans in both rural and urban areas. Working mom of three Anna DiNardo called ecomom’s entry into the Bronx desert a blessing: “I’m trying to raise [my 10-month-old daughter] on all organic food but it gets expensive. I try to save money but it’s not easy.”
Arquette understands the dilemma. “I was in the lunch program at school and we were on food stamps,” he reminisced. “When times got tough for my family, we definitely needed help and that’s something I always remember.”
The actor’s partner in charitable giving, ecomom co-founder Jody Sherman, said that this year alone, the company has “donated 45,000 days worth of food” to kids in need, and continues to donate three healthful meals for every purchase made through their site – regardless of dollar amount.
Babies and toddlers at WHEDco this week may not have been impressed by a celeb’s passing over the pears, but they, like Tyreka Martin’s 14-month-old Xavier, showed their appreciation for organic produce the best way they know how: eating and loving it.
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