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"A Place At The Table:" Documentary Film On Hunger In America

On Sunday, October 27, join CAST (Community Action Southold Town, Inc.) from 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. for a screening of A Place at the Table; a documentary on hunger in America that "examines the shocking paradox of hunger in the wealthiest nation on earth." The film will be shown at Southold High School (420 Oaklawn Avenue in Southold).

CAST is located at 315 Front Street in Greenport and has been serving low-income individuals and families on the North Fork of Long Island since 1965. 

"CAST helps struggling community members meet their basic needs in the areas of nutrition, clothing, energy, employment, and education, and provides a critical safety net for Southold Town residents from Laurel to Orient Point and Fisher's Island. CAST is committed to moving vulnerable populations to self-sufficiency through outreach and education and offers many programs and services, including a food pantry, sharing room with clothing and household items, ESL and computer classes, an early childhood literacy program, assistance with benefit applications, advocacy and referrals, and much more."

Cathy Demeroto, Executive Director of CAST, relayed, "We have seen a significant increase each year in our communities for those that need help. Our clients are the invisible thread that holds our communities together, and therefore we must come together as a community to explore innovative ways to address food insecurity. This is not a political issue, but a human rights and moral issue. It is essential to work together to help our neighbors in need."

One Community Underfed: A North Fork Hunger Forum will be held following the film with a panel to include Tom Colicchio (Chef, Producer); Lori Silverbush (Film Director/Producer); Ellen Teller (FRAC Director of Government Affairs); Robert Carpenter (Executive Director Long Island Farm Bureau); Dr. Fatema Meah (Peconic Pediatrics); and Rev. Roger Joslin (Common Ground Garden).

Further, Demeroto explained, "I saw this film in Baltimore around 2013, and having been on the North Fork for the past few years, I reached out to the filmmakers to see if we could arrange a screening here, as well as a panel discussion to which they graciously agreed. This film is relevant to all communities in the country, and here on the North Fork and Shelter Island, which we service, the abundance of local farms and other assets is helpful, however, we see more and more people coming through our doors seeking help. We assist hundreds of people every week and the need is only increasing as many are simply 'working poor' - seasonal, low-wage workers - that just don't make enough money to make ends meets, particularly with such expensive housing. Exploring innovative and creative ways to assist with food insecurity in our communities is essential."

According to the Food is Fuel website, Silverbush, an independent director and screenwriter, "Has used the film as a launch-pad for a national movement for food justice, and becoming a leading voice advocating citizen activism and food policy reform as linchpins of a just society."

CAST is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., closed only for lunch from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

You can order tickets ($10) in advance at castsoutholdtown.org, or purchase at the door for $15.

Additionally, please bring and donate any non-perishable food item.

For more information on CAST call 631-477-1717, or go to castsoutholdtown.org. For more information related to the film go to foodisfuel.org www.foodisfuel.org.

Eileen Casey spent many years working in the television and music industries in New York City on the "ABC In Concert" weekly series, as well as several prime time network and cable television specials. An award-winning journalist, editor, and artist, and former Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com, she enjoys staying warm in Charleston and cool in the Hamptons.

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