Cars lined up around the block and outside of Angels of Long Island in Patchogue on Saturday as volunteers from Carroll’s Kitchen handed out approximately 2,000 free nutritional meals to those in need.
“I think the event was extremely eye-opening,” said Debbie Loesch, co-founder of Angels of Long Island, a thrift and community outreach store. “There is so much food insecurity here on Long Island and I am so grateful for the opportunity to partner with Ryan Carroll to feed our neighbors and friends on Long Island.”
Carroll, 27, launched Carroll’s Kitchen in March 2020 after losing his job as a chef in New York City due to COVID-19 restaurant closures.
The Sayville native’s goal is to provide meals to the less fortunate, like the elderly in nursing homes, children in high-risk low-income areas of Long Island, and essential workers who are battling COVID-19 on the front lines.
Since starting the nonprofit, Carroll’s Kitchen has fed over 40,000 people, including veterans, police departments, fire departments, shelters, children, and more.
Carroll says they plan to feed 5,000 people every month.
“Our main goal is to battle food insecurity on Long Island,” Carroll said. “Today we have five tons of dry goods — diapers, formula, canned goods, cereal. We’re selling 200 orders of ribs and we have 700 rigatoni bolognese that we’re giving away, along with 700 caesar salads and tons of cookies and bread.”
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The organization, located in Bellmore, produces 3,000 to 4,000 meals per week, and Carroll says while handing out free food at events, they also sell food to the public.
Carroll’s Kitchen caters meals through their virtual food court which allows the organization to raise money to give away thousands of meals.
Fifty percent of all catering proceeds go to a different cause each month.
Carroll’s Kitchen teams up with a variety of local restaurants and the community in order to make this operation possible. They are always looking for volunteers, and people can apply to join through their website.
People can also donate to the cause through the Carroll’s Kitchen website, by PayPal or Venmo @Ryan-Carroll-65.
The organization takes food donations as well.
Carroll’s Kitchen plans to do more charity events like this in the future — Mulcahy’s Pub in Wantagh is next on the list for February.
Carroll says Carroll’s Kitchen also plans to go on a hospital campaign soon.
The organization has fed all the hospitals on Long Island before, and plans to feed them again.
“This is my community, it feels great to help everybody out,” Carrol said. “This started in March after I lost my job and they said I couldn’t cook food anymore, and I said you know what I’m never going to stop.”
More photos from Saturday’s event below.
Top: Carroll’s Kitchen volunteer handing package of bread to driver.