Riverhead Rotary donates $50K to food banks, local restaurants

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have an impact on our communities, one of the casualties has been the cancellation of many charitable events hosted across the North Fork.

That was certainly the case for the Rotary Club of Riverhead, which has already had to postpone its Garden Festival and Rotary Uncorked, which both raise money that gets shared with the community.

But that hasn’t stopped the Rotary Club from giving back to those in need.

The organization has distributed $50,000 from its emergency fund to community groups and businesses with “a history of charitable giving,” president Preston Schoenfeld said in an email to members Sunday.

“The primary recipients were four local food bank programs. We gave them resources to help serve the community during this unfortunate period of time,” he wrote. “Additionally, many of the local restaurants that make our community so very special have stepped up and provided meals on their own to the elderly, first responders and other people in need.  Monies were given to 17 of these local business that have a history of charitable giving.  Lastly, we helped out our weekly food servers and their families.  All of these donations will have positive ripple effects throughout our community.”

Mr. Schoenfeld also said the organization is planning a tribute to health care workers.

The Rotary’s recent efforts were captured in the inspiring video below: