MORRIS COUNTY — The Interfaith Food Pantry and Resource Center recently received a major grant in the amount of $25,000 from The Provident Bank Foundation for their Healthy Choices Mobile Pantry and Meals-On-Wheels programs.
The IFP provides over 1 million pounds of free groceries every year to Morris County residents in need through their distribution sites in the Central Park section of Parsippany and downtown Morristown. Two years ago, they launched the IFP Healthy Choices Mobile Pantry, which delivers food, particularly fresh produce, to people in need who can’t make it to the pantry by partnering with smaller pantries and low-income senior housing located in areas further away from their current sites.
Through a partnership with Morris County Division of Aging, Disabilities and Community Programming, the IFP created a project to provide supplemental easy-to-prepare groceries to low-income Meals-On-Wheels recipients. Clients participating in the program typically can no longer cook for themselves and many live alone. With reductions in federal funding for many senior programs over the last few years, most clients now receive only one meal per day, five days a week. For those on fixed incomes without any other support, this can create a significant gap.
“When we became aware of this situation we jumped into action and working together with the county and came up with a solution: Create a partnership that utilizes the existing infrastructures to meet the need,” said Rosemary Gilmartin, Executive Director. IFP’s Mobile Pantry provides food packages with easy-to-prepare items such as cereal, hearty soups and canned fruit. The Meals-On-Wheels drivers deliver these items along with the prepared meal once a month to the client’s home. IFP and county staff work together to assess needs and ensure success.
“Due to funding limitations, this pilot group was small, but the results have been extremely favorable, and we are set to expand the program in early 2019 with the help of The Provident Bank Foundation, under the leadership of Jane Kurek, Executive Director,” Gilmartin added.
For more information on the Interfaith Food Pantry and Resource Center’s Meals-On-Wheels program, Healthy Choices Mobile Pantry or other programs or services to feed the hungry, click here or call (973) 538-8049.
The Provident Bank Foundation was established in 2003 by Provident Bank to enhance the quality of life in the region through support of not-for-profit groups, institutions, schools and other 501(c)(3) organizations that provide services in communities served by the Bank. Since inception, the Foundation has granted more than $24 million to not-for-profit organizations and institutions working toward stronger communities. For more information click here or call (862)260-3990.