SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Food rescue organization Rachel’s Table said they are now able to better serve western Massachusetts with the addition of a refrigerator van.

What You Need To Know

  • Rachel's Table is a food rescue program of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts

  • The nonprofit organization now has a brand new refrigerator van to deliver more food to families and organizations all over western Massachusetts

  • The van was funded from the American Rescue Plan Act and support from state Sen. Eric Lesser and state Rep. Brian Ashe

  • Rachel's Table has also created a new food rescue partership in collaboration with MGM Springfield

The organization, which delivers surplus food to people in need, got the van with funding from the American Rescue Plan Act and help from state Sen. Eric Lesser and state Rep. Brian Ashe

"This van, thank you senators," director Jodi Falk said. "Will allow us today to deliver thousands more pounds of food than we have ever done before on a daily basis."​

Rachel's Table also announced a new food rescue partnership in collaboration with MGM Springfield.​​

"We can deliver meat and dairy on a daily basis to the Pioneer Valley," Falk said. "We serve 56 organizations that serve so many thousands of people and so we get to move more food everyday."

Tuesday's ribbon cutting was followed by Rachel's Table volunteers and area leaders loading up around 3,500 pounds of surplus food donated by MGM Springfield.

Rachel's Table board member and volunteer Steve Lepow is one of those volunteers and said his relationship with the program goes back years.

"My parents, while I was still working, volunteered for Rachel's Table," Lepow said. "And they found it to be a gratifying experience helping out the needy, and when I retired I decided to follow in their footsteps."

Lepow made his first stop at the Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center in Springfield and said it's important to volunteer his time due to many families struggling since the pandemic.

​"There's a lot of people out there that are hungry, that have lost their jobs through no problems of their own," Lepow said. "Especially during the pandemic, the amount of food we distributed doubled."

Rachel’s Table said the van will begin by operating three to four days a week with the long-term goal of operating all six days of the nonprofit's regular schedule. 

Anyone looking to make a donation or volunteer can do so on the program's website.