Good public health requires
access to healthy, affordable food
Sunday Suppers joins NKCDC as Nourish
NKCDC and Sunday Suppers are elated to announce a merger that anchors the innovative food and nutrition education work of Sunday Suppers in the Kensington, Fairhill and Juniata neighborhoods of Philadelphia. Effective in May 2021, Sunday Suppers has become Nourish, a new meal kit delivery service run by NKCDC.
“Although I will no longer be involved in day-to-day operations,” says Linda Samost, Sunday Suppers’ founder and former director, “I will continue to support the efforts of Nourish and NKCDC, and I hope you will too, so that they can adopt and expand our original goals of advancing food justice and addressing social determinants of health.”
Please join Linda in supporting access to healthy food and nutrition.
Improving access to healthy food
Since 2011, Sunday Suppers has used weekly three-course community dinners as a forum for hands-on cooking sessions, nutrition advice, and tips for shopping on a limited budget. With the beginning of Covid-19 restrictions in March 2020, the organization made sure participating families had access to food and the funds to buy it, and began developing food boxes with healthy recipes and resources.
The new Nourish program, run by Sunday Suppers’ current program manager, Jacquelyn Saez, will deliver weekly meal kits to families containing healthy whole foods, simple recipes, nutritional information, kitchen checklists, suggested physical activity, and social service information. Nourish will also offer bi-weekly Zoom calls focusing on cooking instruction and nutrition education.
“We are grateful for the years of innovative work from Sunday Suppers, the expertise of the staff involved, and the good fit the new Nourish program will be for NKCDC and the communities we serve,” NKCDC Executive Director Dr. Bill McKinney said.
Jacquelyn Saez leads new Nourish program
Program Manager Jacquelyn Saez was born and raised in Kensington. While studying Public Health at Temple University, she learned about the links between diet, nutrition education and food access, and the health disparities in low-income communities both locally and globally. The knowledge catalyzed her decision to become a health educator, focusing on cultural traditions and lived experiences of her community and the community she serves.
Jackie joined Sunday Suppers 2017, and was responsible for the coordination and management of all program activities.
NKCDC’s commitment to health and nutrition
Before joining NKCDC in November 2020, executive director Dr. Bill McKinney was executive vice president and director of research and evaluation at The Food Trust. “Our part of Kensington ranks last of 46 Philadelphia neighborhoods surveyed for health factors and health outcomes, according to a 2019 survey by the City of Philadelphia and Drexel University,” Dr. Bill said.
“Good public health requires more than good medicine. It means safe, healthy housing. It means supporting community green spaces—parks and playgrounds. It means having reliable transportation to work, and school, and doctors. And it means having access to healthy, affordable food.”
From 2011 to 2018, NKCDC partnered with St. Christopher’s Foundation for Children to provide weekly boxes of fresh food from Lancaster County farms, available by subscription. When that partnership ended in July 2018, NKCDC began looking for a food and nutrition program that could serve the community around its offices in Kensington.
Since 2018, NKCDC has trained and hired 30 Community Health Workers as part of Philadelphia’s Health Enterprise Zone, funded by Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services in partnership with Thomas Jefferson University. Four of NKCDC’s health workers have been interning with Sunday Suppers and the pilot phase of the Nourish program, providing additional support for participating families through a needs assessment and specialized resource plans.