NORTHFIELD — Beth Israel’s social action program, Manna at the Shore, has donated to five area nonprofits to help combat food insecurity in Atlantic County. Recipients of the grants include A Meaningful Purpose, Grace Place, JFS Food Pantry, Sister Jean’s Kitchen, and the South Jersey AIDS Alliance.
To keep its volunteers safe during the pandemic, Manna was unable to prepare meals. However, the virus hasn’t stopped Manna from fulfilling its mission to feed those in need. A portion of funds historically used to prepare meals has been donated to agencies that are doing the essential work of food distribution.
A Meaningful Purpose is a local farm that serves as an animal rescue, a platform for sustainable, organic farming and an employer for individuals with special needs. The nonprofit was founded by local restaurateur Cookie Till of Steve and Cookie’s along with partners Lenny Varvaro and Beth Senay on Reed’s Farm in Egg Harbor Township. Its mission is rooted firmly on the foundation of an inclusive society where everyone is respected, valued and has choices to lead a holistic and dignified life.
Grace Place is the food pantry at Grace Lutheran Church in Somers Point. Over its 30-year history, it has provided over 500,000 meals and food baskets to families in need within Somers Point, Linwood and Northfield. Grace Place is run by dedicated volunteers from local churches. Jim Cordery oversees the volunteer effort.
The Jewis Family Service Food Pantry offers hearty meal options to individuals and families who are feeling the effects of the current recession, homebound seniors on fixed incomes, adults with disabilities, young families with low incomes and others facing temporary crises. Based in Margate, the JFS Food Pantry serves more than 2,500 individuals and families per year.
Sister Jean’s Kitchen is a joint venture food pantry in cooperation with the Community FoodBank of New Jersey. It is located on Pennsylvania Avenue in Atlantic City and provides a wide variety of staples for those in need.
The South Jersey AIDS Alliance has partnered with Manna for 26 years. Manna prepares, packages and freezes meals and the alliance delivers the meals to those who are living with HIV/AIDS and other life-threatening illnesses. SJAA’s programs and services span 1,300 square miles in three counties — Cumberland, Cape May and Atlantic — and serve about 2,500 people annually.
For more information, see MannaShoreNJ.org or call Beth Israel at 609-641-3600.