A Need We Feed started on October 29, 2012, when Super Storm Sandy devastated many homes and businesses along the New Jersey shoreline. While construction may have rebuilt these structures, A Need We Feed was born and restored comfort, hope, and confidence in people giving back to their community.
"While natural disasters capture headlines and national attention short-term, the work of recovery and rebuilding is long-term." ~ Sylvia Mathews Burwell
Feeding the Sandy First Responders
There were 350 visiting military and first responders that we wanted to provide with a Thanksgiving dinner. Donations began to pour in from Stop & Shop and food suppliers. Chef Mike Jurusz from Atlantic Bar and Grill prepared a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with the help of volunteers. We set up a large tent with seating to accommodate everyone and buffet-style food.
Feeding the 'Littles'
In fall 2018, we launched our "Meal and Mentor" program with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ocean County (BBBSOC). A Need We Feed partnered with local restaurants to get a discounted weekly after-school meal. In 2020, we delivered to three Toms River locations; two elementary schools mentored by the BBBSOC, the third mentored by the Donovan Catholic boys' basketball coaches and players.
A Need We Feed was called into action once the COVID-19 pandemic hit our community in early Spring 2020. We increased the weekly meal program from 200 to 800 while supporting local small business restaurants. Meals were delivered to veterans in distress, BBBS children and their families, homebound seniors, and the homeless.
What we Do
As a grassroots organization giving back to our community is paramount. A Need We Feed, a registered 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, prepares, packages, and delivers over 11,000 hot meals to veterans, seniors, children, families, and the homeless in need. Each year a toy drive is held during Christmas to provide gifts to families. In the Spring, we provide Easter baskets filled with candy and goodies to many families and offer a complete Easter dinner.
Partnerships help us succeed; our partnerships within the community have grown and continue to flourish. Together we join forces with immediate responses when called upon. Some of our partners include organizations such as the Department of Child Protection and Permanency. Oceans Family Success Center, Seeds of Service, Harbor House, Ocean Mental Health, MA22, Just Believe Inc., Recalibrate, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Chef Lou's Army, JUST BE, Shore Vineyard Church's soup kitchen, American Legions, CSM Robert Gallagher Charitable Foundation and Code Blue. We are always open and looking to grow our partnerships because we firmly believe many hands make light the work.
We continue to partner with local non-profit organizations today that help veterans, seniors, children, and families in need.