Series on Food Insecurity in Watertown Debuts on WCA-TV

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Jan Singer, left, the former Executive Director of the Watertown Community Foundation, discussed how the Foundation responded to food insecurity during the Pandemic with journalists Maya Shwayder and Charlie Breitrose. (Photo by Dan Hogan / WCA-TV)

The following announcement was provided by Watertown Cable Access Television:

In cooperation with the Watertown News and thanks to a generous grant from the Watertown Community Foundation, Watertown Cable News is producing a series of videos chronicling issues of hunger and food insecurity in the community.

In part 1 of the series, we talk to a number of different stakeholders in the community from the Food Pantry, Famers’ Market, Wayside, and Community Foundation to find out how many people are struggling and where the gaps in service lie.

Accompanying this series are articles written by WCN news anchor and local journalist Maya Shwayder as well as Watertown News Editor Charlie Breitrose.

Read the Articles

Part 1: Watertown’s Hidden Problem: Food Insecurity Among Us

Part 2: Hunger Hits Home: A Watertown Teenager’s Struggle to Feed Herself

Part 3: Hunger in Watertown: Task Force Tackles Social Needs, Tries to Fills Gaps Left by State, Local Programs

Part 4: Through Pandemics & Collapsed Ceilings, the Watertown Food Pantry Stays Open

Part 5: Filling the Watertown’s Free Fridge is a Community Effort

Part 6: Food Insecurity in Watertown: Hunger is a Multi-Faceted Problem — It Won’t Magically Go Away

Roundtable Discussion

On February 12th, WCN and the Watertown News produced a live roundtable discussion at the Mosesian Center for the Arts to hear from representatives from the city, Food Pantry, Watertown Housing Authority, and Wayside to dive further into these issues.

Click here to see the video

2 thoughts on “Series on Food Insecurity in Watertown Debuts on WCA-TV

  1. Thank you WACTV & Watertown News for your series on food insecurity in Watertown. You are providing a valuable service to us by highlighting the needs of at least 20% of our residents – those at incomes that qualify them to receive food benefits. And by all reports, that number is rising.

    The invited guests at your February 12 panel – all front-line Watertown leaders – provided thoughtful perspectives from their work with residents who are food insecure.

    I am a passionate advocate for also doing our part to solve our housing shortage. So I appreciated the views of several panelists who explained that if they could ‘wave a magic wand’ to solve food insecurity, it would be to solve the housing emergency.

    We know 43% of Watertown renters and 26% of owners pay more than 30% – many pay 50% – of their income on rent or mortgage. Families face choices – food or rent?

    One thing is clear. We need maximum attention and participation in these problem-solving conversations.

    As a resident, I regret that I didn’t spread the word myself and didn’t ask the City to rally our many resources to inform and mobilize residents, elected leaders, appropriate Boards & Commissions, and staff to know about the February 12 panel on food insecurity.

    Especially now, with the City’s commitment to conducting a Health & Human Services needs assessment, many of us under-appreciated this opportunity.

    Thank you for reminding us that ‘all hands on deck’ is needed for solving food insecurity (and housing insecurity, too).

    Jacky van Leeuwen

  2. You hit the nail on the head Jacky! Thank you for such a thoughtful comment. Yes to “all hands on deck” to solving food and housing insecurity in Watertown. Watertown News and WACTV’s reporting on food insecurity in Watertown is eye-opening and much appreciated.

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