Area Organizations Join Together to Fight Food Insecurity

Rotarian Eileen Duffy, left, distributes some of the meals to Dawn Garrison, of Ranch Hope.

Statistics show that one in nine homes in Cumberland County experiences food insecurity. Recognizing the need to help alleviate this issue, the Vineland Rotary Club recently provided 340 spaghetti dinners to people in need.

Donna Bennett, Club president, explained, “Providing community service is an essential aspect of what we do as Rotarians. During a time when there’s limited or uncertain access to adequate food supplies our Club continues to see the importance of focusing on community projects that help address and lessen the anxiety that comes with food insecurities. I especially thank the Cumberland Cape Atlantic YMCA for sponsoring our second annual spaghetti dinner to feed our community. The Y’s donation of $2,000 helped us provide a warm meal on a Sunday afternoon to many individuals.”

George Steinbronn, Jr., the Y’s CEO, said, “Our YMCA is deeply committed to improving the quality of health of families in our area. We were glad to be a lead sponsor of this event which so effectively matched agencies with those in need of a nutritious meal.”

The menu included a complete dinner of spaghetti and meatballs, salad with dressing, rolls and butter, and a variety of desserts. Approximately 25 Rotarians and their spouses cooked and packaged the foods. They worked for hours to have the dinners ready for pickup or to be dropped off where needed.

The receiving agencies were the Cumberland County Family Shelter, Vineland Boys and Girls Club, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, M-25 Initiative, Mission Teens, Ranch Hope, and Salvation Army, plus a group of families displaced by a Millville fire.

Andy Browne, fundraising chair of the Vineland Rotary Club, said, “Our Club works really well together as a team. When you unify, you can do so much, and I give credit to the Club.

“Everyone seemed genuinely thankful,” Browne added. “We know that the food definitely went to people who needed it.” He also extended thanks to the YMCA for its role in supporting the project, saying “When the Y heard that we needed help with our fundraising, they donated to our cause. We hope to continue to partner with them, as our mission at Rotary dovetails with the YMCA’s mission.”

For more information about the Rotary Club, visit VinelandRotary.com.

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