Difference Makers: New Yorkers Start Effort To Feed Essential Workers Amid Pandemic

Peter Haskell
March 30, 2020 - 6:51 pm

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NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — At the frontlines of the coronavirus battle are the state’s healthcare workers, and New Yorkers are trying to do everything they can to show their appreciation.

Peter Digioia seemed to have started a trend when he set out to send his sister, who is an ICU nurse at Mt. Sinai Hospital, some lunch amidst her busy workday.

“Just wanted to send her and her colleague a hot lunch one day, just to show them our appreciation,” he explains.

But the small gesture ended up growing quickly.

He woke up the next day to friends sending him about $300 on a cash-transfer app to send more supplies and food.

He and his girlfriend, Brooke Smalley, saw the potential to help so many more frontline workers.

They set up a GoFundMe page where people can donate funds to help send frontline healthcare workers hot food and other necessities.

“People were just so ecstatic about the cause and excited. We started getting hundreds of dollars and they started sharing with their friends and they started sharing with their friends,” Digioia explains.

With the help of restaurants and caterers, they are now providing 1,000 meals a week.

The food is going to several hospitals as well as firehouses and police stations.