NEW JERSEY -- TAPintoTV recently spoke with Paul Brozen, organizer of Film Industry Feeds the Front Line, a group that has sprung up in response to the coronavirus pandemic in the New York Metro area. As its name implies, film industry professionals, who have mostly been sidelined due to social distancing orders, have banded together to volunteer to produce and deliver meals to health care workers on the front lines.
The idea for the group came from Brozen’s experience on film sets. At lunchtime, trucks would show up which were able to feed large groups of people on location in short order. However, the food was served buffet-style, which clearly now would not be possible. “I had to reinvent how we could do it so that it was done in a safe manner,” Brozen said.
The Film Industry Feeds the Front Line teams are organized via a “hub and spokes” concept borrowed from the airline industry. In New Jersey, one such hub is stationed at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Paterson. The hospital routinely tops lists of busiest ERs in the nation (as of this writing, it’s 3rd). Mobile canteens, much like food trucks, are parked at the hospital with the ability to cook food on site. From the hub at St. Joe’s, the team of volunteers prepares and packages food which they can also send to other nearby health facilities, as well as EMS workers stationed at the Meadowlands.
Since the project started, Film Industry Feeds the Front Line has served 19,850 meals at 23 facilities at a cost of $5.33 per meal, including packaging and labor. To date, the group has raised $112,000 and counting. “When I first came up with this idea, I had no concept of how much money or how many meals we would be able to do,” Brozen said. “There was just: let’s do it.”
To see more of their work, read updates, and make a donation to further their efforts, visit their GoFundMe page at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/film-industry-feeds-the-front-line.