April 10, 2019 By Alexa Beyer
A food and fundraising event will take place on the Long Island City waterfront this Sunday to support an organization that helps immigrant families separated at the border.
“Dining for Justice,” hosted by Immigrant Families Together, will feature 25 food, beer, and wine stations, as well as live music. The fundraiser is being held at Sound River Studios, located on 4-40 44th Drive, by a building with a giant countdown clock marking the end of President Donald Trump’s first term in office.
The event aims to raise funds for a volunteer-powered organization that was founded last year to assist families separated by the Trump Administration’s ‘zero tolerance’ immigration policy.
Food vendors include local eateries, such as John Brown Smokehouse, M Wells Steakhouse, and Sugar Freak. The restaurants and chefs are all donating their food and efforts to the event.
“Chefs are big hearted people,” event organizer Jonathan Forgash said, who co-founded the Queens Dinner Club. “It is from this place that they donate their skills and efforts to help the families that are being detained and separated at the border.”
The group, which was established by Long Island City resident Julie Schwietert Collazo, provides families with the resources they need to build a safe, healthy and stable life while they pursue their asylum claims.
It also connects them with legal support and posts bond for detained asylum-seekers. To date, the group has posted bail for more than 70 parents, grandparents, and older siblings held in ICE detention facilities.
“This fundraiser has enormous symbolic significance,” Collazo said. “By coming together to share food, to build the beloved community of which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke, or to create radical welcome, as poet Elizabeth Alexander has said, we are not only engaging in the most basic and beautiful human exchange. We are also raising funds to create opportunities for these families to build a new life — and to quite literally feed themselves — in this new land.”
The event will take place on Sunday, April 14 from 5-8 pm. Tickets are still available at eventbrite and children 12 and under can attend for free.
Tickets, which cost $125, include unlimited food and beverage tastings.