Food is an integral part of the human experience. From a meal shared with friends to the recipes that tie our cultures together, how, what, and who we eat with define the experience that brings people together. But for families facing food insecurity, food can also be a major source of stress and uncertainty. For countless youth throughout our community, in-school meals are a massive deterrent to hunger and a guaranteed source of daily nutrition. However, when school lets out for the weekend, families are left without these critical resources. To help fill the gap and keep our community’s youth nourished all weekend long, you are invited to lend a helping hand with Mercer Street Friend’s “Send Hunger Packing” initiative.
The upcoming meal-packing event will be held on Wednesday, December 13th, from 10 am to 1 pm at the Starbucks Community Store in Downtown Trenton, located at 102 S Warren St, Trenton, NJ 08608. Guests are welcome to take a few moments out of their day to help pack meal bags for school-aged children throughout the City of Trenton. Whether you spend four minutes or four hours pitching in, every little bit helps nourish our community’s youth.
The Send Hunger Packing program (SHUP) is a weekend meal bag program that seeks to close the food gap for school-aged children by providing food for when they lack access to school meals. Through partnerships with over 30 sites, including the Trenton School District, nearly 60,000 SHUP bags are distributed annually throughout Mercer County. With the help of committed volunteers, over 1,000 SHUP bags with four meals per bag are packed weekly.
This initiative is hosted by Mercer Street Friends, a Quaker-affiliated, nonsectarian 501(c)(3) organization devoted to helping individuals and families facing economic disparity reach their full potential. Mercer Street Friends offers a multi-tiered approach to their expansive list of integrated services, including food security, providing social and emotional support to parents and families, and offering educational opportunities from preschool to adult education and beyond.
Since its founding in 1958, Mercer Street Friends has forged alliances throughout the region to help bring these critical resources to our community’s most vulnerable members. Thanks to the support of thousands of individuals, families, foundations, and corporations, Mercer Street Friends can continue building community, nurturing self-worth and independence, and offering resources for individuals, children, and families to overcome poverty and its lasting effects.
For more information on Mercer Street Friends and how you can support this incredible cause, please visit their website here: MSF – Home. If you have any questions or want to learn more about the Send Hunger Packing (SHUP) initiative, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the Mercer Street Friends team at 609-396-1506 or Info@mercerstreetfriends.org for additional information. Hunger has no home in Mercer County, and now you can be a part of sending it packing for our community’s youth.
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