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Stuff the Bus with Food on October 14

The latest installment of Stuff the Bus will be this Sunday.

Can we fill a large school bus with healthy food donations for C.H.O.W. (Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse)?  Organizers are once again counting on it!  Following the success of the May and August Stuff the Bus food drives, the community is looking to hold one more on Sunday, October 14 in order to help the food pantry out during this pre-holiday season.

All collected food will be donated to Livingston’s C.H.O.W.. C.H.O.W, spearheaded by Sister Barbara Howard of St. Philomena’s and a project of the Livingston Clergy Association, will distribute collected items to Livingston residents in need. Housed at St. Philomena’s, C.H.O.W. is also open to local residents, of all faith, in need on a drop-in basis and those interested can contact Sister Barbara at (973) 992-1382 for additional information.  Excess food collected during the drive will be donated to soup kitchens and food pantries in our surrounding areas.

The non-perishable items requested for collection are: canned tuna, peanut butter, napkins, toilet tissue, paper towels, breakfast cereal, condiments, canned beans, dried beans, pasta, white or brown rice, pasta sauces, macaroni & cheese, powdered milk, canned fruit, canned vegetables, baby food and jelly & jam. Only new, unopened items will be collected.  Please make sure items are not expired and healthy items are appreciated.

The Stuff the Bus bus, generously provided by the Livingston Public Schools, will drive through town and make many stops.  Members of the community are welcomed and encouraged to come bring donations to any bus stop or but items ahead of time at Kings or Shoprite. For your convenience, Kings and Shoprite will hold your donation till Sunday and load it on to the bus for you.  

STUFF THE BUS SCHEDULE 

Newark Academy at 8:15am-8:45am

Livingston’s Shoprite at 9:00-9:30am

Livingston’s Kings at 9:40-10:15am. 

Mount Pleasant Elementary School 10:20-10:45am

Harrison Elementary School 10:50-11:20am

Temple Beth Shalom from 11:30am- 11:55am  

Lastly at noon, the bus heads over to the Livingston 2012 Fun Run for Health and Wellness presented by the West Essex YMCA, the Big "L" Club and the Livingston Education Foundation.

 This project has received much support from the community.

With leadership from Deputy Mayor Rudy Fernandez, the townships annual community wide service project efforts this year is focusing on C.H.O.W.  The organizations who, have agreed to participate in the town wide effort include: The Livingston Kiwanis Club; The West Essex YMCA; Livingston UNICO; Livingston Sunrise Rotary Club; Livingston Knights of Columbus, Council 3533; Livingston Masonic Lodge #11; the Livingston American Little League; and Healthy Community, Healthy Youth.  And special thanks to Kings and Shoprite for their support of these efforts.

The timing for the community wide focus on Livingston’s C.H.O.W. is perfect.  First, C.H.O.W.’s demand continues to grow.  C.H.O.W. has worked hard to determine appropriate distribution methods for food collections and after doing so, it has capacity to accept more donations to meet growing demand.  In addition, the focus on C.H.O.W. ties into an already planned community effort, Livingston’s first ever Food Day, which had been in organizing stages when the decision to work with C.H.O.W. was made. 

Food Day is a national initiative, sponsored by the Center for Science in the Public Interest, working to bring people together to push for healthy, affordable food produced in a sustainable and humane way.  In 2012, Livingston has joined Food Day’s “eat real movement” to help do nothing short of transforming the American diet.  

Key partners in Livingston’s Food Day efforts include the West Essex YMCA, Livingston Township, Shoprite, Kings, Livingston Public Schools, Livingston Public Library, C.H.O.W, and other community groups.  The concept of Food Day was introduced to the community by the United Way’s Pantry Partners, which has offered support to Livingston’s organizing efforts. To learn more about Livingston’s Food Day efforts or to create your own Food Day event go to www.facebook.com/LivingstonFoodDay or contact Eileen Sweeny at Eileen.sweeny@unitedwaynnj.org for more information. 

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