EDISON, NJ - The South Edison Community Association (SECA) is spearheading a food drive to benefit the “Hands of Hope” food pantry on Saturday, May 9, and it is receiving widespread support from two dozen civic groups, schools, churches and labor unions.

Non-perishable food donations for “Hands of Hope” will be accepted from Noon–4 pm, Saturday, May 9 at Edison High School, on Boulevard of the Eagles, off Old Post Road. SECA volunteers will be on hand to help.

“The South Edison Community Association is getting tremendous support from a diverse group of generous local organizations. We are grateful so many amazing partners have pledged to help for our neediest neighbors,” said SECA organizer Anthony Russomanno. “We hope individual residents and families will also contribute non-perishable foods on May 9th to help re-stock our local food pantry’s shelves.”

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The food pantry, based at St. James Episcopal Church on Woodbridge Avenue, needs canned vegetables, fruits and soups; canned tuna and hams; boxes of pasta, rice and macaroni & cheese; boxes of potato flakes and baking mix; cereals and oatmeal; bottled tomato sauce and other gravy flavors.

“The coronavirus pandemic is creating a greater need for food from Hands of Hope. With more people jobless or temporarily furloughed, more local families are now struggling. The demand on our local food pantry is rising,” said Middlesex County Freeholder Charles Tomaro, a long-time food pantry volunteer.

Hands of Hope annually provides bags of nourishing foods to nearly 4,000 needy Edison-area households, including senior citizens, veterans and people with disabilities. It provides hot lunches to 4,500 needy people yearly; and it distributes 300-350 turkeys and food bags at Thanksgiving and Christmas; plus it serves over 500 meals at Easter.

Partnering with SECA are: AFSME Local 12, BAPS Temple, Boy Scout Troop 12, Congregation Ohr Torah, the Edison Democratic Organization, Edison Firefighters IAFF Local 1197, Edison FOP Lodge 101; the Edison Italian American Club, Edison PBA Local 75 and Edison Superior Officers Association, Edison Public School District & Superintendent Bernard Bragen, Edison Republican Organization, Edison Township Education Association (ETEA), Indian Business Association (IBA), Knights Of Columbus Council 3272 & 4885, Masjid Al Wali Mosque, OPEIU Local 32, Re-Purpose NJ, the South Asian Community Organization, Teamsters Local 469, Edison Wetlands Association and UAW Local 2620.

Learn more about Hands of Hope at https://handsofhopenj.org/. In lieu of food donations, make contributions by check or money order to Hands of Hope, NJ; P.O. Box 1057, Edison, NJ 08818.

Learn more about the South Edison Community Association at www.SouthEdisonCommunityAssociation.com. To volunteer, call (732) 261-7172 or email SouthEdisonCommunityAssoc@gmail.com.