Red Hook Responds:
Dan Budd and Taste Budd’s Cafe Leading the Community Effort
He continued, “With online fundraising, acquired grants and small pay-what-you-can donations Red Hook Responds is feeding 50 to 100 people a day with meal delivery.” But, he figured, “we could easily move to 200-400.”
Out of this need, Red Hook Responds was created. Budd couldn’t do it alone, though. With financial support from the Ascienzo Foundation and the Dutchess Responds Fund, and with the help of community members and Bard students, Budd organized a helpline for residents in need of grocery and prescription delivery. It quickly turned attention to meal delivery. “We also have neighborly chats to help keep our community connected and offer... wellness type checks,” said Budd.
At the time of this writing, Red Hook Responds had 391 volunteers and continues to grow. Among them are numerous students from Bard College. “We have key Bard students, like Emma Bernstein and Bree Bogle, who are operators and shift leaders. They are working remotely from Pennsylvania, The Bronx, locally and… other locations,” Budd said. “The Center for Civic Engagement,” he added, “has been behind us all along.”
Budd plans for Red Hook Responds to stay on as a permanent fixture in the community after the coronavirus pandemic abates. “I see… more challenges ahead,” he said, including farming assistance, creative arts connections, and more. But he knows his young organization can’t do it all. “We coordinate, enhance and support existing and new volunteer efforts,” he said. And he knows Bard students will be with him all the way.
Post Date: 04-30-2020