Health & Wellness

Press Releases

MEND Hunger Relief Network Sharpens its Focus on Healthy Food

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EAST ORANGE, NJ - MEND, a non-profit working to alleviate hunger in Essex County, is accelerating its commitment to making fresh and healthy food available to its food pantry patrons, through the appointment of an Executive Director, enhanced programming, and a revitalized logo and website (www.mendnj.org).

Robin Peacock was named to the newly created Executive Director position, after working for two years as the organization’s Grants and Special Projects Consultant. Robin, a former tax attorney, has a long history of community engagement and leadership, having served as a board member and volunteer for several non-profits in Essex County. 

Among her first duties as Executive Director has been to oversee the development of a new website and logo aimed at underscoring MEND’s goal of improving access to nutritious food throughout its network of 17 food pantries. “MEND has been collaborating with our food pantry network and community partners, and seeking grant funding, to improve the quality of food that we distribute to patrons. Now we are updating our external communications to align with and emphasize these efforts, to help us make an even greater impact,” said Peacock.

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MEND recognizes that its more than 115,000 food-pantry patrons suffer not only from food insecurity, but are also at risk of diseases such as hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes and/or obesity. In response, it has made access to healthy food a priority since mid-2016, when it launched its Healthy Pantries, Healthy Patrons program. The guiding principle of the program is that all people should have access to fresh and healthy foods, regardless of their socio-economic status.

Expanded in 2017, MEND’s Healthy Pantries, Healthy Patrons program is the force behind a number of recent initiatives, including:

  • A healthy-food stipend for each of MEND’s 17 pantries so they can purchase fresh, nutritious food to supplement what they receive from traditional food drives. In 2017, MEND distributed $850 to each pantry under this initiative;
  • The sourcing and distribution of more fresh produce, through new relationships with various organizations, including America’s Grow-A-Row, The Giving Gardeners’ Project, and Amp Your Good LLC;
  • The transformation of a donated school bus into a green-painted vehicle (the “Green Bean”) that will be used to collect fresh and healthy food and as a mobile food pantry;
  • The transportation of fresh food to MEND pantries from the Community FoodBank of NJ, local supermarkets and other locations;
  • The purchase of refrigerators and freezers so MEND pantries can store more perishable food;
  • A greater focus on providing nutritional information and guides to healthy eating.

With its appealing palette of harvest colors and clean design, MEND’s new website reinforces the organization’s heightened focus on healthy foods. The new logo, an apple-like shape that evokes a heart-in-hand symbol, rounds out the revamped look. South Orange, N.J.-based 4Elbows, a website design and advertising/marketing agency, worked with students at Seton Hall University to conceive and execute the new design. 

The website’s color scheme of green, brown, soft orange and a touch of yellow is meant to be warm and welcoming, without relying on bright colors or veggie icons, said Priscilla Goldman, owner and creative director of 4 Elbows. The logo, meanwhile, alludes to “people helping people get the right nutrition,” she said.

MEND has seen the need for its services expand dramatically in recent years. The more than 115,000 patrons MEND served in 2017 has increased significantly from the 65,000 served in 2011. MEND’s recent move to change its name from Meeting Emergency Needs with Dignity, to Meeting Essential Needs with Dignity reflects its recognition that for many in Essex County, hunger is a chronic condition, not a temporary response to an emergency, as in the past. 

The Essex County residents MEND serves are among the most vulnerable in New Jersey, with 18.6% reporting food insecurity, the most in the state, according to Feeding America. Essex was also ranked the least healthy county in the state, after Cumberland County, according to the New Jersey County Health Rankings for 2016. In Newark, where eight MEND food pantries are located, 29.9% of the population lives in poverty, according to the U.S. Census. 

About MEND

MEND has been providing hunger relief to Essex County residents through its interfaith network of 17 food pantries since 1980. In addition to food, MEND supplies the pantries with resources and funding, and coordinates a monthly forum so food pantry managers can exchange best practices. Its patrons include the unemployed, the working poor and those on limited fixed budgets. Thirty-seven percent of those who benefit from MEND pantries are children, and about 15% are seniors. MEND became a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation in 2010. Its pantries are located in Bloomfield, East Orange, Irvington, Maplewood, Montclair, Newark, Orange, South Orange and West Orange.

 

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Bloomfield

Teen-involved Crashes Kill 10 People a Day Between Now and Labor Day

June 19, 2018

FLORHAM PARK, NJ - More than 1,050 people were killed in crashes involving a teen driver during the, the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day in 2016. AAA reports that the average of 10 people per day is a 14 percent increase compared to the rest of the year.

As school lets out for the summer, AAA stresses the importance of preparing and educating inexperienced teen drivers for ...

Half Days at Bloomfield Public Schools June 18 and 19

The Superintendent and BOE President have decided to ensure pupil and staff safety in the predicted heat, all Bloomfield Schools will operate on a 1/2 day schedule, Mon., 6/18/18 as well as again on Tues., 6/19/18.

Visit the school district  website http://www.bloomfield.k12.nj.us  for details. Stay cool!

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Tue, June 19, 6:30 PM

70 South Gallery, Morristown

70 SOUTH GALLERY TO HOST THE WORK OF ACCLAIMED ...

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Tue, June 19, 7:00 PM

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Wed, June 20, 7:00 PM

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Fri, June 22, 6:00 PM

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Sat, June 23, 10:00 AM

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Bloomfield Police Department Blotter June 4 to June 10, 2018

June 13, 2018

BLOOMFIELD, NJ - The following police blotter has been issued by Lt. Anthony Sisco of the Bloomfield Police Department.

Shoplifting:

6/6/18- Officers were dispatched to 351 Broad Street (Quick Check) on a report of a Shoplifting. An employee observed an unknown African American male wearing a beige shirt and carrying a black bag. The suspect placed dessert items into that black ...

McGovern's summer renovation closing party celebrates change

June 17, 2018

It always takes a few seconds for your eyes to adjust when you walk into McGovern's Tavern in Newark, a downtown fixture since 1936.

But this Friday afternoon, there were two immediate sights that demonstrated something was different.

First, most of the photos, portraits, and articles that cover the bar's walls were removed, the relics of decades of history gone.

Second, you ...

Montclair Township Animal Shelter Reopens

MONTCLAIR, NJ - After a fire swept through the dog run of the Montclair Township Animal Shelter nearly two years ago, Montclair officials commemorated a reopening of the facility with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

On Wednesday, the Township of Montclair, Friends of the Township of Montclair Animal Shelter and employees, welcomed the public to the ribbon cutting ceremony. The re-opening ...

Suspect Charged with Using Sword in Fight Over Parking Spot in Manville

June 19, 2018

 

SOMERVILLE, NJ  - A Manville man has been charged with aggravated assault and other charges after police say he attacked another man with a sword in a dispute over a parking space.

The victim had attacked the suspect, Jared Razzano, 35, of North 9th Avenue, with a contractor’s four-foot level, according to the Somerset County  Prosecturors Office, but he has not been ...

N.Y. Firefighter Found Asleep in Garage of Lake Como Home Accused of Pooping on Backyard Chair

LAKE COMO, NJ — An 18th Avenue resident woke up early on Sunday, June 10 to quite a mess, and it wasn’t the empty bottles, cans and other debris that litter the front lawns of Lake Como homes on a typical weekend during the summer.

The homeowner not only found an unknown man sleeping inside his garage at about 6 a.m., but someone had vomited on his outdoor patio and defecated on a ...

State Lawmakers Calling on Feds to Lift Strict Limits on Fluke Fishing for This Season

June 18, 2018

TRENTON, NJ — While New Jersey anglers began the fluke season last month with strict federal catch limits still in place, state legislators are pushing to have those regulations lifted until there is better data available on the popular fish’s offshore stock.

The State Assembly is asking the federal government to suspend a 40 percent quota reduction that enters its second year ...

Manutti Marina in Belmar: Top Choice for Boating, Fishing and All-Around Family Fun

BELMAR, NJ — It’s no secret that Belmar Manutti Marina ranks among the best boating destinations along the Atlantic coast.

Tucked along the eastern shoreline of the idyllic Shark River — just a five-minute trip by boat to the ocean — the state-of-the-art marina is a top choice among boaters looking to stay for the season, enjoy a vacation or spend the weekend.

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America's Celebrated Evolving Journey

June 17, 2018

This Fourth of July, the United States of America will celebrate its 242nd birthday since the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  Our Nation was conceived in liberty at its core. Together we the people, with ancestors from every part of the world, continue the struggle to live by its founding noble principles.  Namely that, “We hold these truths to be ...

The Power of Positive Engagement

To the Editor:

I wanted to share this letter from Laurie Beacham, Media Director for NJ 11th for Change, about the notable increase in voter turnout and citizens deciding to run in the recent primary election:

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Bloomfield Bengals Sports Update May 21, 2018

Volleyball advanced to the County final with wins over Science Park and Montclair. Unfortunately, Livingston got the better of the Bengals in the County Championship Match.   

At the County Track and Field Championship Meet the Girls Team had a fine showing placing 5th overall. Leading the way was Kaela Edwards-2nd in high hurdles and Aicha Naouai- 2nd in javelin. The best ...

Bloomfield Bengals Athletic Update May 14 2018

 At the SEC Championship Meet La’Shan White equaled his school record in winning the 400-meter hurdles. He also won the 110- meter High Hurdles and anchored the winning 4x400 relay team. Aicha Naouai won the Javelin with a throw of 126’6.5(#9 NJ) and the Discus with a mark of 95’5”. Warlys Lizardo won the Boys Discus at 120’.

Kristina Collins reached ...

The Jaffe Briefing - June 19, 2018

TRENTON - It is June. That must mean our state lawmakers are yelling at each other over the proposed state budget, which must be adopted by the end of the month or government shuts down. Some media is refraining from coverage of the daily blow-by-blow, as the typical resident just assumes taxes will go up, no matter what. But, here is the latest. Gov. Phil Murphy has his proposed ...

TAPinto Featured Franchisee: Steve Lenox of TAPinto Paterson

This week's feature will focus on TAPinto Paterson's franchisee, Steve Lenox. Find out how the current owner of a public affairs firm went from a former State Director for Senator Frank Lautenberg to a proud TAPinto franchisee for New Jersey's third largest city.

 

Q. When did you join TAPinto.net?

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The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn

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A friend, whose opinion on literature I respect greatly, reported to me recently that she had just finished reading A.J. Finn's debut novel, The Woman in the Window. Of it she said, “I wish I hadn't finished it,” which I interpreted to mean, “It was so good I'm sorry that I finished it.” ...

When the Men Go Off to War by Victoria Kelly

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Victoria Kelly's first published volume of poetry, When the Men Go Off to War, is a wonder in that poems can be written so beautifully about the subject of war. Each poem is a jewel, polished and colorful, glittering with elegant imagery, and rich in emotional wallop. The book, divided into three sections, ...

The Queen of the Big Time by Adriana Trigiani (Ballentine Books, 2005)

            The Queen of the Big Time by Adriana Trigiani, a New York Times best selling author, was recommended to me by a young woman who actually came from the town of Roseto, Pennsylvania, the place where the novel is set. “The author did such a wonderful job of describing how the town actually is,” said the young lady.

The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah (St. Martin's Press, 2018)

            What is the “final frontier” on the Earth's surface? Many people would say Alaska, the 49th state, which was added to the United States fifty years ago. Once one has traveled to that remote land, it is impossible to forget the magnificence of the terrain and beasts. Floating by ship in Glacier Bay, surrounded by ...

NJ 11th for Change Endorses MIKIE SHERRILL for Congress

June 19, 2018

NJ 11th for Change Endorses MIKIE SHERRILL for Congress

Sherrill Meets Group’s Endorsement Criteria and Will Best Represent District’s Values

MONTCLAIR, NJ – NJ 11th for Change announced today that it has endorsed Mikie Sherrill for the U.S. House of Representatives seat in the 11th Congressional District of New Jersey.

After a comprehensive process including candidate ...

Rutgers Equine Science Center Annual Summer Showcase Scheduled for July 11

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. — The Equine Science Center at Rutgers University is hosting its annual "Summer Showcase" from 10 am to noon  on Wednesday, July 11 at the Equine Exercise Physiology Laboratory on College Farm Road on the George H. Cook Campus in New Brunswick. The Summer Showcase, similar to an open house, is a FREE event that is open to the public and perfect for any and ...

Horse Care Workshops at Lord Stirling Start June 23

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. — Somerset County Park Commission Lord Stirling Stable is offering Horse Care Workshop 101 for adults and youth seeking to gain experience and confidence around horses through a combination of non-riding activities and hands-on practice.

Horse Care Workshop 101 will be held at Lord Stirling Stable, 256 South Maple Avenue in Basking Ridge, NJ beginning Saturday June ...

Essex County Freeholder President Brendan Gill Proclaims June LGBT Pride Month

NEWARK, NJ – Essex County Freeholder President Brendan Gill announced that the Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders passed a resolution at their last meeting, Wednesday, June 6, 2018, proclaiming June as LGBT Pride Month in Essex County.

“I am proud to stand with our LGBT brothers and sisters in recognizing June as LGBT Pride Month, and look forward to continue working ...

Obituaries

Jul 4, 1933 - May 18, 2018
Maria A. Probst (nee: Geiger), 84 of Bloomfield passed away on May 18. Her final days were spent ...
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Jul 21, 1966 - Apr 6, 2018
Sheila Rossi (nee Borges) 51, of Nutley, NJ died peacefully on April 6, 2018. Visitation will be ...
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Thirty Days after the Draft

It’s been just about thirty days since the 2018 NFL Draft and the New York Jets have been working hard to build the team fans have been waiting for. Let’s recap the first round draft pick before discussing OTA’s and other Jets info.

Some New York Jets fans were certain earlier in the 2017 season that with the way the win-losses were going, Sam Darnold would be the New York ...