Real Housewives of New York actor Jill Zarin has never shied away from an opportunity to help people. Whether it’s raising money for cancer research in the name of her late husband or organizing a fundraiser for orphaned children in Kenya, she has spent most of her career finding new ways to support those in need.
When the COVID-19 pandemic began affecting health care workers and the food-insecure in South Florida and beyond, Zarin drew on her experience and leapt into action.
“What does a Jewish mother know how to do? We know how to feed people,” she says. “We take care of people.”
After seeing drone footage of cars lining Collins Avenue waiting to receive meals, Zarin began devising a plan to get food into the mouths of her fellow South Floridians. Within 24 hours, she garnered the support of national restaurant supplier Chef’s Warehouse, who immediately sent a truck loaded with 4,000 meals to Miami. She then met with the Miami mayor’s office to learn where her support was needed most.
“There’s 700,000 people on a good day that are food-insecure in South Florida,” she said. “Now, there’s over 1 million.”
Food delivery began on Tuesday, April 28, at 10 a.m. Chef’s Warehouse delivered 73 cases of hamburger and 10 cases of eggs to All Souls Episcopal Church at 4025 Pine Tree Drive in Miami Beach. Those in need are encouraged to stop by and pick up supplies to feed themselves and their families.
Outside of the food-insecure, there are also members of the South Florida community who are unable to leave their homes to buy food and supplies for themselves. Jill has a plan for them as well. Every Tuesday and Thursday, her team will be delivering 300 bags of food to the population of vulnerable South Floridians who have become homebound.
“It takes a village,” she said. “I want to feed these communities as best I can.”
In addition to feeding South Floridians in need, Zarin has also been supporting health care workers across the United States with her program, Noshes for Nurses. Just last week, she was able to feed an entire hospital staff in Macon, Illinois. Her GoFundMe page has already raised over $50,000, all of which is being used to purchase food and supplies for those on the front lines. To donate to this cause, visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/noshesfornurses.
Chef’s Warehouse is also offering direct-to-consumer delivery of their restaurant-quality food during this time. You can visit https://shop.chefswarehouse.com/ and receive 10% off with the code FEEDMIAMI.