SEEING HUNGER IN HER COMMUNITY: One thing we learned from the pandemic is that hunger is everywhere in South Jersey. Janet Giordano knows hunger exists in the suburbs as it does anywhere else – and Cherry Hill is no exception.
“I see the hunger. Over the years I have been asked about the depths of hunger in the suburbs, it exists here just like anywhere else, we have working poor, people working hard for minimum wage,” Giordano shares. “We have a very diverse community in Cherry Hill – seniors living solely on social security. Families surviving on disability. People who need to eat.”
Distributing food to hundreds of families every month from its Beechwood Avenue location, the Cherry Hill Food Pantry, launched in May of 2007 by Giordano and a team of well-meaning people from six different local congregations, knows it is their Tuesday and Thursday food distributions each week that provide lifeline nutrition to residents of Cherry Hill, Marlton, Mount Laurel, Haddonfield and nearby neighborhoods. The pantry is even open on Wednesday evenings, to help people outside its general service area.
Today powered now by 14 local congregations, the pantry and Giordano continue to see the hunger around them, and continue to fight it at every turn. “I constantly remind myself that, if it was not for this pantry, people would go without. My love for the Lord let me know this was the mission I had been looking for and, if permitted, I would do this forever – as long as we see hunger, our doors are open.”