Thank You to Sunnyside Community Services

Curious to learn more about Sunnyside Community Services? Kenneth Lauritzen, Division Director of Senior Services, Josue Monterroso, the Senior Center Director, and Kate Donohue, Manager of Institutional Giving, took time out of their busy schedules to answer a few questions about SCS and its relationship with the CSA.

What is the mission of Sunnyside Community Services?

The mission of Sunnyside Community Services (SCS) is to strengthen our community by providing a continuum of vital services and activities that enrich the lives of individuals of all ages.

When members aren’t able to pick up their shares, the CSA donates the food to SCS. What does SCS do with the veggies, fruit, and specialty products donated by Sunnyside CSA?**

SCS includes the produce donated by Sunnyside CSA in the meals served at our Center for Active Older Adults. Our on-site kitchen serves approximately 200 hot, nutritionally balanced meals each day. Ensuring that seniors’ diets include fresh produce is a priority in providing nutritional services, and we are very grateful to the CSA for this assistance.

How does the produce donation positively impact residents?

Many of our senior center members have incomes below the federal poverty level, and so are at risk for nutritional insecurity. The meals we serve help to mitigate that risk. Including fresh, locally grown produce helps us to enhance the taste and nutritional content of these meals.

What daily programs and services does SCS provide?

SCS provides a broad range of human services that meet the needs of our community’s children, youth, adults, and seniors. Our holistic approach to service delivery and our integrated service model enable us to meet the needs of our community’s families and to adapt to our community’s changing needs.

Our programs for youth and families are designed to help the young people of a diverse, predominantly immigrant and low income population to overcome barriers to academic and career success. We operate a free Pre-Kindergarten Program, two after-school programs at local elementary schools, and a Beacon Community Center that serves middle school students – each of which helps students build the skills that are critical to educational achievement and long-term success. Our workforce readiness program, Grounded and Positioned for Success (GPS), connects youth with internships either in a local business or within our agency, and our College Readiness Program helps under-served students prepare to apply for and succeed in college.

Our Home Health Aide Training Program connects local job seekers to employment opportunities in the growing field of home care. The program offers participants training and certification as a licensed home health aide, and places program graduates in employment with one of our two affiliate home care agencies. These agencies serve approximately 1,700 homebound seniors in four of the five boroughs of New York City, providing over 54,000 hours of care each week.

Our programs serving seniors work to help the older members of our community to stay healthy and independent as they age. Our senior center, the Center for Active Older Adults, currently has approximately 2,500 active members, 44% of whom have income below the federal poverty level. The center operates a program of over thirty arts, educational, and recreational activities, and has a Case Assistance counselor on site to provide assistance with the enrollment process for benefits and entitlements.

SCS Case Managers coordinate services for frail, homebound seniors such as meal deliveries, home care, transportation, and more. We provide Geriatric Mental Health counseling services to 300 seniors per year. Our social Adult Day Services Program offers therapeutic care to seniors who are living with Alzheimer’s disease or other cognitive impairments. The Friendly Visitor program connects homebound seniors with volunteers who commit to a weekly visit. Pet Pals, a part of the Friendly Visitor Program, helps seniors to care for their pets.

SCS also operates a Care Transitions Program in partnership with two local hospitals to support seniors who are being discharged and help them avoid unnecessary re-hospitalization. As the lead agency in the Western Queens Caregivers Network, SCS provides a range of respite opportunities and skills trainings designed to reduce the strain that family caregivers experience in their roles.

How many people does SCS reach on a yearly basis?

SCS reaches 14,000 individuals each year, including children, youth, adults, and seniors.

Describe SCS’ vision for how it plans to serve the community in the next 3-5 years.

Over the next few years, SCS plans to continue building our senior services to meet the needs of a growing senior population. Recent developments in senior services include ADventures, a collaboration between our social Adult Day and Caregivers Programs, which operates day trips to New York City’s many arts and cultural institutions that enable ailing seniors and the loved ones who care for them to spend quality time together in a relaxed, enjoyable setting. We aim also to continue meeting the emerging needs of our community’s youth. Recently, we began offering a free Pre-Kindergarten Program, Sunnyside Up Pre-K, which provides our community with access to the many benefits of quality early childhood education.

**Estimated dollar value of food donations from the CSA to SCS was $6,000.

Report on CCNY Grant

This year, the Sunnyside CSA was the proud recipient of a $3000 grant from Citizen Committee for New York City. Our goal in applying for this grant was to secure much-needed funds to increase awareness of the Sunnyside CSA, particularly our subsidized share program.

So far, we’ve used the grant funds for:

And in just a few weeks, we’ll be offering a few workshops through local public schools:

  • Workshops for children will include a fun healthy food demo and nutrition education, and students will receive CSA info for parents
  • Workshops for parents of school-aged children will include CSA and subsidy program info, food demo, nutrition and information on local foods

We hope these events encourage discussion and participation in local food systems while also making these programs accessible for more community members.

Did you participate in any of our programs? We’d love your feedback! Post a comment or contact us!

Lewis Waite Order Deadline for 12/9 Delivery

Raw Milk Cheeses must be ordered by Tuesday 12/2
Everything else by Thursday 12/4

Order here.

Lewis Waite Farm is happy to provide you with some great food related gift ideas this Holiday season.

We are offering Gift Packs of Teeny Tiny Spice Co of VT’s delicious and unique spice blends. These are available in several themes of flavors: Indian, Grilling, Mexican, and Spice Lands. The individual tins also make excellent gifts, but you’ll have to wrap those yourself!

Gift Certificates to Lewis Waite Farm CSA Extras – a great gift for your CSA buddies. If you consider this for someone outside the CSA network, we can also ship UPS (under LWF Farmer Network).

Don’t forget New Year’s Eve! Putney Mountain Winery’s Apple Bubbly makes an excellent nonalcoholic toasting beverage for the ringing in of the New Year. Preservative and additive free, it tastes like liquid apple with pleasant bubbly-ness.

We are offering the Cheese Plate again, for your Holiday celebrations. It’s a mix of 5-6 kinds of cheeses from all the farms we partner with. (under LWF Farmer Network)

Product Updates:

Argyllshire Farm: Barbara will be bringing us some more 100% grass fed lamb in time for the delivery. Consider a rack or leg of lamb for your Holiday meals! Lamb meatballs are also a great hors d’oeuvre, and there are many meals other than the Holidays before we return to the city.

Cascun Farm: will be bringing us more of their own Pasture Raised parted chicken – half chickens will return! They will also prepare FreeBird Chicken all natural parts and whole birds.

Cowbella Dairy: Still no butter for us, but we have lots of Kefir on hand. We’re having a special on it for the month of December. This drinkable yogurt has no thickeners added.
Lewis Waite Farm: We are low on pork again – what a run on bacon! Please check the Washington County Hoosick listing for Non-GMO, humanely raised, all natural pork. These are raised outside with a large yard, by a farm in Hoosick, NY (just a few miles away from Lewis Waite).

Yoder Farm: Ryan is offering you a chance to get his heirloom beans! Grown on organically managed Yoder farm, we have all kinds of new beans. Marfax, Kebarika, Hutterite and more. We’re not sure how long they’ll be in stock, so order soon if you wanted to try any!


In the Box–November 20

It’s our last week for the season, and I hope you’ll be coming back to us in the spring. We’ll have sign up info for the 2015 season available soon!

Cabbage – 1 small head
Kohlrabi – 2 pieces
Celery Root – 1 piece
Carrots – 1 bunch
White Eva Potatoes – 5 lbs
Romanesco Broccoli – 1 head
Broccoli – 1 head

As always, the newsletter is here.


Special Pumpkin Offer From Our Farmers!

We have French Musquée de Provence pumpkins available for sale for $10 each. Each weighs between 12 and 25 pounds and is certified Organic. These gorgeous heirloom pumpkins are beautiful with their rich, terra-cotta color, and heavily lobed and ribbed skin. Musquée de Provence is dense and meaty, with few seeds, mildly sweet, and exceptionally flavorful and smooth- an old French favorite, excellent for soups and pies and any other culinary uses.

If you want one (to be delivered next Thursday, November 20) please contact our farmers at Include your name and pick-up location (Sunnyside); you have until next Tuesday to order one, and the farm will invoice you directly via PayPal.


In the Box 11/13

It’s our second-to-last week and it looks like we are going to end the season in veggie glory.

Toscano Kale – 1 bunch
Butternut Squash – 1 piece
Carrots – 1 bunch/head
Nicola Potatoes – 4 lbs
Beets – 1 quart
Fennel – 1 bunch
Broccoli – several heads

Contents of the box is subject to last minute change. Check out the newsletter for more information, recipes and storage tips.

Thanksgiving with the CSA

This week is key for getting your Thanksgiving needs met through the CSA.

Order Milk Not Jails by tomorrow (11/10) for delivery on November 20th. Find all the info you need here.

Lewis Waite turkey orders must be placed by this Friday (11/14), and some of the varieties have already sold out. You have until Monday 11/17 to figure out what else you may need to complete your feast, with delivery on Thursday, 11/20. Everything you need to know is here.

We’re also selling tickets to win a Lewis Waite turkey, so bring money to this Thursday’s pickup. The winner will be announced before the deadline to order.

If you’re looking for a turkey recipe, I’ve made this the past few years and it’s pretty foolproof. Plus, no advance prep like brining, which I always find challenging in my 3/4 size apartment refrigerator. Instead of canola oil I will use rendered leaf lard from pastured pork, which can be ordered from Lewis Waite. Don’t be scared, rendering lard is simple and easy and all you need is a dutch oven, a mesh strainer, and storage containers. I’ve successfully subbed arrowroot for the cornstarch, one for one.

Orzo with Radicchio, Escarole, Smoked Mozzarella, and Speck


1 lb dried orzo
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh lemon zest
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (6-oz) head radicchio
2 cups escarole
¼ lb. speck, chopped
4 oz smoked mozzarella, cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Cook orzo in a pot of well-salted boiling water until al dente.

While pasta is boiling, whisk together oil, zest, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste in a large bowl. Thinly slice radicchio and escarole and add to dressing.

Reserve 1/2 cup cooking water and drain orzo in a colander.

Add hot pasta and reserved cooking water to radicchio/escarole and let stand 1 minute to wilt.
Add mozzarella, speck, and lemon juice and toss well. Season with salt and pepper and serve warm.

4-6 servings

Community Supported Agriculture in the 11104