2022-2023 M25 Board Leadership & Update

by Rob Weinstein, founder, The M25 Initiative

In the financially and emotionally challenging year of July 2021 – June 2022, the support and generosity of our partners enabled M25 to provide over $46,000 in grant funding to assist programs that continue to feed the Cumberland County community amid the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, with another $33,000, we were able to continue to financially support Cumberland County municipalities, churches, and volunteers’ efforts in operating the Code Blue Warming Centers and providing shower programs throughout the County.

Because of you and our faith-based and nonprofit partners, we now have showers for anyone in need in Bridgeton, Millville, and Vineland! Lastly, to date, we have housed over 111 chronically homeless neighbors in housing with wrap-around case management. With your support, we are striving to reach the milestone of approximately 131 individuals housed in 2022-2023.

I want to thank our Board President for 2021-2022, Mr. Ray Garcia, for his leadership and service. He helped lead our Board through the difficult terrain of this past year, and we are grateful for his service, and his continued service as immediate past president.

At our July reorganization meeting, the Board elected our 2022-2023 Board President, Mr. David Moore. Dave has been with M25 since our second year. He has been a champion of the Housing First Collaborative since we first began the visioning process in 2015. Dave is the assistant vice president for Behavioral Health at Inspira Health System. Dave is an enthusiastic supporter of the projects of the M25 Initiative, and we are grateful for his willingness to continue to strengthen and expand our efforts to help the “least of these” (Matthew 25).

Additional officers for the 2022-2023 year include: Denise Arrigo (president-elect), Laurie LaTorre (vice-president), JoEllyn Jones, Esq. (secretary), and Richie Elwell (treasurer).

As we look toward this coming year, the M25 Initiative will continue to raise funds to house our homeless neighbors, provide financial assistance to the Code Blue warming centers and food pantries/soup kitchens, and assist the shower programs in the three major municipalities. We will also launch a new grant program to support our Cumberland County youth (more details to come).

All of this is not possible without your support! Please consider becoming a monthly financial partner at m25initiative.org/donate or through Facebook at facebook.com/m25initiative. A gift of $5 or more a month will go a long way in helping our neighbors.

Additionally, please hold the following dates on your calendar for our fundraising events:

• “Fall in Love with M25 – Wine Not?” Sip & Support fundraising event at Terra Nonno Winery – October 26, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Tickets and sponsorships are available at m25events.com.

• Annual Breakfast Fundraiser at The Savoy Inn – January 25, 2023 at 8 a.m.

• Spring 2023 Fundraiser – more information to come

For more information about these events, visit m25events.com.

On behalf of the entire Board of Trustees, thank you for your continued support of the M25 Initiative. Together, we show that love overcomes hate, collective compassion triumphs over apathy, and hope conquers despair.

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