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Preble Street partners with DoorDash in effort to address Maine food insecurity

Through the Project Dash program, food can be delivered from Preble Street's Food Security Hub directly to those in need that may not be able to visit a food bank.

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine — According to Feeding America, one in 10 Mainers is experiencing food insecurity. For children, that same figure is one in six. Organizations, like Preble Street and many others, are working to reduce the number of people facing hunger in Maine. 

On Wednesday, Preble Street announced a new partnership with DoorDash to increase accessibility to healthy foods provided by the nonprofit.

"Our partnership with DoorDash helps Preble Street to provide more food to more people and ensures that that food is as fresh and as full of nutrition as possible," Preble Street Executive Director Mark Swann said during a press conference Wednesday. "By working with DoorDash, Preble Street has been able to more than triple the number of pantry boxes filled with fresh, healthy, and culturally appropriate foods that we send out to Maine’s most vulnerable communities."

The partnership will operate through DoorDash's Project Dash program. Through this partnership, those facing food vulnerability can have boxes of healthy foods delivered to them, just like any other delivery through the company.

"Any delivery that's made looks like an average DoorDash delivery. So hopefully it empowers people to ask for help if they need it," Christina Kennedy of DoorDash said. 

According to Kennedy, there have already been 2.5 million deliveries through Project Dash across the country and Canada since it launched in 2018. 

Leaders with Preble Street hope this service can help remove barriers for those that may not be available to travel to a food bank.

"There's so many barriers to people accessing food banks, but we have so many incredible resources here as well that we really want to distribute to the community," Natalie Varrallo of Preble Street said. "So this has just been such an amazing opportunity to get food boxes out to clients who maybe wouldn't have the access to be able to come to a food bank or just need it to fit better into their lifestyle."

Varrallo said through the partnership, Preble Street could provide up to 50 boxes per day to those in need.

Varrallo said the best way to request a box is to go through a case worker. If you have any questions, you can reach out to Preble Street at 207-775-0026. 

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