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2021 Winter Newsletter

A TASTE OF COMPASSION

A publication of the Food Bank of South Jersey

Help feed South Jersey families in need.

A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT & CEO

Thanks to remarkable people, like you, and so many first time donors, as well as partners, supporters, sponsors, volunteers and friends, I am grateful to be able to share with you that, as you read this, tens of thousands of people are being fed. With the support of our remarkable South Jersey community, we distributed more than 22.5 million pounds of food in 2020, up from 15 million pounds distributed in 2019. Meals provided rose to 18.7 million meals in 2020 as compared to 13 million in 2019 – a sobering demonstration of the escalated hunger threat.

With 2021 taking form, we are resolute in our commitment to continue providing our region with the
life-sustaining food, nutrition leadership and community hope it needs to truly be South Jersey Strong.

With an organizational vision to continue to grow our neighborhood reach and infuse South Jersey with food, as well as sustainable health and wellness resources, our intention for 2021 is to continue expanding our partnering initiatives to further grow our network of food distribution, as well as foster initiatives that provide support to fight systemic poverty. Only through the addressment and response to the plight of systemic poverty will we enable and empower a food-secure South Jersey.

In closing, I’d like to share with you a wonderful new donor I met recently, Vindhya Mavuri. A seventh grader from Burlington County, Vindhya made and sold 135 cake pops which turned into a $135 donation to our hunger-relief efforts – providing 405 meals! It took Vindhya 12 hours to make and sell all those delicious cake pops – and we are so grateful to her.
Thinking of ways to help others is so important.

Actually taking the time to help others is heroic. When it comes to the battle against hunger, there is no hero too small, no effort too understated – one cake pop can make a difference. So to my new friend Vindhya, and to all of you, I hope you know how heroic you all are in helping us to feed South Jersey. It is because of your efforts we stand strong, resilient and energized for the year ahead.

 


Fred C. Wasiak
President & CEO

2020: The Year Hunger Hit Home

The crisis of food insecurity in South Jersey changed dramatically during 2020, elevating at alarming rates almost overnight – creating a year of hunger for our region, and our nation. Our region was not spared from surging unemployment, as individuals and families once spared from economic hardship sank into poverty.

As 2021 takes shape, with an organizational vision to continue to grow neighborhood reach and infuse South Jersey with sustainable health and wellness strategies, the Food Bank of South Jersey commits to fighting hunger – and introducing food security to many more.

“Providing food is not the cure for systemic, concentrated poverty, it is part of a larger solution that helps those who need temporary food assistance,” reports Fred C. Wasiak, President and CEO, Food Bank of South Jersey. “As we emerge into 2021, we as a community need to do much more by providing opportunities to eliminate the inequities which adversely affect the communities we serve.”

The Communities We Serve

Today, there is an estimated more than 61,000 additional food-insecure people in South Jersey, over 26,650 are estimated to be children. Together, as a community united, we will feed South Jersey and bring forward the day when all our neighbors are food secure.

FOOD-INSECURITY INCREASES

BURLINGTON COUNTY
40%
CAMDEN COUNTY
48%
GLOUCESTER COUNTY
60.8%
SALEM COUNTY
57.4%

OUR IMPACT IS YOUR IMPACT

Stay Engaged

Thank you for remaining engaged in our work here at FBSJ, despite the many challenges we all faced in 2020. We know times have been hard, and we are fueled by your continuous support and loyalty! Despite typical in-person opportunities being restricted, there are still plenty of ways to stay safely involved:

Host a Virtual Food Drive

Rally your friends, family and coworkers to fundraise on behalf of the Food Bank of South Jersey. It’s the easiest way to help the most people, right from your computer! Get started at donate.foodbanksj.org/virtualfooddrive.

Volunteer With FBSJ

Off-site volunteer opportunities are available, but limited due to COVID-19 restrictions. For more information, contact our volunteer services department at volunteers@foodbanksj.org or 856.662.4884 x 160.

Create a Legacy in Our Community

By including FBSJ in your estate plans and/or will, you ensure your impact on South Jersey posthumously. To learn more about our planned giving program, contact Lavinia Awosanya, Chief Development Officer at lawosanya@foodbanksj.org or 856.662.4884 ext. 119.

Give the gift of a full plate

Every $1 you give helps fill 3 plates for those who are struggling to make ends meet. Make a donation online at donate.foodbanksj.org/21winter.

With your ongoing support, we can continue our mission to alleviate hunger in South Jersey.