Founded in 1998, Ricesticks and Tea (RST) is a food pantry program serving over 120 pre-screened low-income Asian immigrant and refugee families each month. Those 120 households represent over 300 children, adults and seniors. It is the only food pantry program in the region whose mission is to serve the Asian community and provide food that is consistent with their cultural cooking traditions and preferences.
The program began as a collaboration between the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry and the Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence. RST was created in response to legislation that denied food stamps to all immigrants regardless of their circumstances. Battered immigrant women and children as well as the elderly are among the most affected.
In 2003, Tufts Medical Center, recognizing the need to provide healthful nutrition information as well as food supplies, began supporting a nutrition education component consisting of health and nutrition-oriented workshops with culturally and linguistically appropriate materials to benefit clients and their families which ran for several years.
A diverse group of volunteers package and distribute food at the Arlington Street Church in Boston. For more information on donating to the program, questions, or to volunteer individually or as a group, please direct your inquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org.
**Ricesticks and Tea serves a limited number of clients, all of whom are pre-screened for income eligibility and referred by referral agencies. No walk-in clients are able to be accommodated.