On a cold rainy night this past October, a series of large boxes are tucked in the darkness on the top step of a church in midtown Manhattan. This is where Robbie lives. He is waiting for the Coalition's Grand Central Food Program van. As it arrives with hot meals, Robbie and the other men who sleep in front of the church finish putting their boxes together for the night. Their goal is to create a tight seal to keep the body heat in.
Robbie was born in Queens. He was married and has two grown children who he has not seen for three years. He worked for 16 years for a printing company in Lower Manhattan, but became homeless after losing his job several years ago. He still manages to keep a sense of hope: "I'm going to try for my pension next year and then I can get a little apartment."
For men and women like Robbie, the food, clothing, and compassion of every day New Yorkers provided by the Grand Central Food Program does not just help them survive - it offers them a daily connection to a support system offering a real chance at a better life.
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