Support Mass. Peace Action’s Holiday Food Drive for Chelsea!

Paul Shannon and Gladys Vega
MAPA's Paul Shannon delivered boxes and bags of food along with a $3,645 check from our members and supporters to la Colaborativa's Gladys Vega, December 21, 2020

MAPA members and supporters have donated $3,645 plus a large amount of packaged food.  On Dec. 21, Paul Shannon delivered a check representing these donations to la Colaborativa.  Thank you for your generosity. 

by Paul Shannon

At the “Where do we Go from Here” conference on December 5, Gladys Vega from la Colaborativa (formerly the Chelsea Collaborative) informed us of the emergency conditions that have struck the immigrant community of Chelsea, just a few miles away from us. The combination of widespread COVID infections and the related economic crisis caused by the shutdown of key sectors of the economy has hit the working population of Chelsea particularly hard. The result is hardship of all kinds: illness, impending evictions, and inability to pay bills or purchase sufficient food.

Gladys Vega spoke about the COVID-19 crisis in Chelsea on December 5

In response, Gladys opened a food pantry in her own home. That project expanded rapidly with the growing need and started delivering food to needy families. Then the drivers, and Gladys herself, became infected with the virus stretching the food operation to the limit. But la Colaborativa struggles on – and we can help.

Currently Gladys and her colleagues are planning to put together 3,000 food boxes that will be delivered to families this Christmas season. Each box will contain:

  • A box of pasta
  • A can of corn
  • A jar of spaghetti sauce
  • A can of black beans, and
  • Tortillas

Here are the different ways we can help the collaborative secure sufficient supplies of these food items:

1. If you have some of these items in your home, bring them to the front porch at 30 Hancock Street in Somerville (up from the Porter square shopping center). There is a big long driveway next to the white house where you can pull in. Call 617-623-5288 if you are lost.

2. When you shop or order food, get an extra 5 of each of the items listed above and bring them to the Hancock Street front porch*

Donate3. Donate online. We will consult with Gladys whether she wants us to purchase the food items for La Colaborativa or to just send her the cash so la Colaborativa can purchase those goods themselves at the supermarket.

*if you have contact with a local supermarket who would be willing to donate some of these food items, or sell them at a discount, please let us know.