Responding to Food Insecurity in Florida with Gulf Coast JFCS

Abdel Dana Roca, Cindy Minetti, & Eliza McCall-Horne of Gulf Coast JFCS

It’s Thanksgiving time and our thoughts always turn to food and those who may not have it. Every year, MidPoint addresses food insecurity with a different community organization that is responding to the needs of the hungry. In 2023, in Florida, 10.6% of people in Florida don’t have access to enough food, according to Feeding America. Overall, Florida is ranked 10th in the nation in food insecurity and 8th in child food insecurity. Of Florida’s 67 counties, 53 have food insecurity rates that exceed 15%. Responding to these needs are a host of different local social service agencies that have appeared on MidPoint over the years, including Feeding Tampa Bay, Metropolitan Ministries, Meals on Wheels, and today, our friends from Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Community Services who joined us from their offices in Clearwater to discuss the many ways their programs address food insecurity in the different communities of Florida, from resettling refugees to helping elderly, poverty-stricken Holocaust survivors, and providing emergency food support to families in crisis. Their services are extensive, inclusive, and open to all who qualify for assistance, not only to the Jewish community.

Our guests included Dr. Eliza McCall-Horne, Sr. Vice President, overseeing initiatives and programs focusing on Behavioral Health, Children and Family Services, and Elder and Disabled Services. Cindy Minetti is Sr.Director of Jewish Family Services providing programming for the Jewish community including supporting Holocaust survivors, and the William and Sally Israel Food Pantry that is open to all. Abdel Dana Roca is Director of Refugee Integration Services providing resettlement assistance and integration to the Florida community for those newly arrived in America.

More information about Gulf Coast JFCS and its services may be found here.

Listen to our live show from the MidPoint archives here or in the app or as a WMNF MidPoint podcast wherever you get your podcasts.


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