About / Overview
We reduce food insecurity.
We rescue excess food.
We promote sustainable food policy.
We founded Gotham in the summer of 2020 to address soaring food insecurity brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Initially, we served as a bridge between the city’s largest food rescue organizations and local feeding initiatives, like community refrigerators.
In the fall of 2020, we were contacted by the tenant association at the NYCHA Dyckman Houses in Inwood. The tenant leaders asked if we could help them obtain and operate a community refrigerator for the benefit of tenants and neighbors. In the process of securing that community fridge, we learned of the astronomically high food insecurity among NYCHA residents–three times that of the average New Yorker.
It was then we decided to broaden our mission and establish food rescue operations in areas of high need, with a focus on New York City public housing complexes. Through our partnerships with tenant associations across the city, we are expanding nutritious food access in historically marginalized communities. While our mission has evolved, our purpose is the same as on Day One: to advance food justice and foster an NYC where food security is a way of life.
We believe that
access to nutritious food
is a human right.
Our mission is to advance food justice by building community fridges and establishing food rescue operations in areas of high food insecurity, with a focus on supporting NYC public housing residents.
We recognize that actualizing food justice requires a sustainable system of food rescue, distribution, and policy reform. Our partnerships with public housing leaders, mutual aid organizers, and food retailers throughout the city are premised on the belief that food insecurity is a community-wide problem that deserves a community-wide solution. We create and facilitate relationships between those with excess food and those in need, bridging divides in furtherance of a food-secure, equitable NYC.
We serve as a conduit between local food retailers, partner non-governmental organizations, and tenants’ associations of the New York City Housing Authority in order to reduce food insecurity in our community.
Food insecurity is the measure of the availability of food and individuals ability to access it. In some New York City neighborhoods, more than half of residents identify as food insecure, a condition that has far-reaching consequences for their quality of life.
We reduce food insecurity by establishing sustainable models of food rescue in areas of high need, with a focus on public housing developments throughout the five boroughs.
Food Rescue Operations
We partner with NYCHA tenant associations to build direct relationships with grocers, retailers, and restaurants to rescue access food and deliver it to our network of community refrigerators. We routinely work with Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Jokrs Grocery Delivery, and Breads Bakery, among others.
Bridge the Divide
We also serve as a conduit between large food rescuers—like City Harvest and Food Bank—and other community fridge networks throughout NYC, providing food to more people in marginalized communities.
Our mission is lodestar. We envision a New York City where food rescue operations are a standard feature in every public housing complex and food donation is a standard practice of businesses and individuals alike. Every month, we are implementing food rescue operations at additional NYCHA complexes and forging partnerships with more community leaders and businesses.
If you believe in Gotham’s vision of a food secure New York City, we hope you will join us by donating money, food, and/or time.
Financial donations are critical to maintaining our ongoing operations. No donation is too small—everything makes a difference.
Our organization is powered by a community of volunteers. If you are passionate about ending food insecurity, please consider getting involved.
Contact us directly with any questions about our organization or operations. We look forward to chatting with you.