Feast of Justice banded together with community organizations and caring neighbors to donate food and supplies to families affected by the recent government shutdown last week.
The nonprofit dedicated to ending poverty received 1,362 pounds of food and 3,000 diapers and personal care item. Forty families went to the site last Tuesday and Wednesday to pick up the items. They were given points determined by the size of their family and able to pick out items that had been allotted a certain amount of points each.
Overall, 1,630 pounds of food were distributed to 127 individuals from 40 families. The total included the donations and items of Feast of Justice’s own food bank.
“We’re very excited of the way we could rally a neighborhood and various service providers in the community to make something like this happen pretty quickly,” Pastor Tricia Neale said.
Other organizations from NESTCo., an initiative to connect Northeast Philadelphia with local resources, contributed. Tables were set up at the site with information about things like cash assistance, stress-relief workshops and more in case families needed further assistance.
“The families weren’t receiving this handout as a Band-Aid,” Neale said. “We’re concerned about the whole person, and some of their problems could run deeper than lack of a paycheck.”
Based on the turnout, another event is likely being planned for some time in February. Neale said that other families beside those impacted by the government shutdown are struggling, and they are working on ways to open the service to other families struggling with crisis needs.
Donations were made by Kingdom of Life Church, Philadelphia Diaper Bank, CORA Services, Friends Hospital, Rolling Harvest, Catholic Social Services Northeast, Turning Points for Children, the officers of Rep. Kevin Boyle and Councilman Bobby Henon and individual donors. About four dozen volunteers helped out on the three-day effort, including volunteers from Turning Points of Children, Kingdom of Life Church, the Block Church, Feast of Justice, Friends Hospital, CORA Services, the Bridge Way School and individual volunteers. ••