The coronavirus has forced The Block Gives Back to pivot this spring and into the summer.
After feeding the homeless in Center City in late February as part of a monthly outreach, the Block had to postpone or cancel some planned events such as Love Thy Park, Peace and Play Day and street cleanups.
Throughout April and May, the Block gave out free meals outside its headquarters, at 6831 Torresdale Ave. (near Longshore Avenue), in Tacony.
Last Saturday’s platter featured, pasta, meatballs, salad, roll and water. Peanut Chews, bread, milk and miscellaneous groceries were also distributed. The food is prepared in the Block’s kitchen.
The group – consisting of president Tom Roush, vice president Hakeem Ruiz and captains Felix Alvarez, Kevin Morales and Sean Rogge – spreads news of the weekly giveaway on Instagram. Others learn through word of mouth.
On average, the Block gives out a little more than 100 meals each Saturday. The group invites the needy to its Torresdale Avenue shop this Saturday and future Saturdays, until further notice, at 3 p.m.
The Block is already planning its annual school bookbag giveaway for Aug. 22. The group plans an essay contest for teachers to earn gift cards to buy classroom supplies.
TBGB is grateful to all its donors.
To donate to the Block’s meal and bookbag giveaway efforts, go to Cash App (TBGBDonations), Venmo (TheBlock-GivesBack) or PayPal (The Block Gives Back Inc.).
Donations of school supplies can be made at the weekly Saturday afternoon meal giveaways. ••