SOMERSET, NJ - The Franklin Township Chamber of Commerce held its Masquerade Holiday Party at the Imperia on Easton Avenue Dec. 6. 

Its members, their friends, and local businesses networked over cocktails, dinner, and live music provided by the B-side while supporting this year's "Give Back Honoree" the Center of Great Expectations. 

"On behalf of the Franklin Township Chamber of Commerce, I want to extend a very warm thank you to everyone who joined us for our annual holiday party," Franklin Township Chamber of Commerce (FTCC) President, Juanita Painson said. "This year we started our “Give Back” program, allowing members to support one of our non-profit members. "Members donated gift cards, and other items to the Center of Great Expectations."

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The Center for Great Expectations (CGE) currently provides a continuum of care that includes two residential treatment centers with an on-site child development center, Katy’s Place;  Roots to Recovery, an intensive outpatient treatment program; and Permanent Supportive Housing. 

'We are so thankful for the generosity of the members of the Franklin Township Chamber of Commerce. We look forward to working with the Chamber members building connections with the community," Noreen Whittemore, CGE Director of Community Relations said.  

The FTCC is making a push this year and next, to partner with local not-for-profits, and its holiday party served as sort of a kick off to the initiative. 

"It was wonderful to meet members of the chamber and to learn of their interest in connecting more deeply with us," Pamela J. DeLuca, CGE Director of Development Operations said. "The gifts, gift cards, diapers, wipes, cream, and soap will help a number of families."

"We are looking to support all of the member not-for-profits, and encourage our local business to do the same," Painson said. 

According to the CGE’s website, its organizational Nurtured Heart Approach® provides a safe environment for each client to individually benefit from an innovative treatment modality that combines trauma-informed care and Parent-Infant Mental Health, for the best possible outcomes for both parent and child.

During the holiday party, Painson told members to expect big things for 2018, starting with two events which will take place in January, part of a "Small Business Series." To learn more about the chamber visit the FTCC's calendar http://www.franklinchambernj.org/events/ for information about the details, date, time and location of upcoming events.

Membership for the FTCC has grown close 25 percent year over year (2016 vs. 2017), and next year Painson plans to continue to grow membership by increasing activity and communications between new and past chamber members.    

Members of the community can call Noreen Whittemore directly to donate to The Center for Great Expectations at nwhittemore@cge-nj.org or call (732) 247-7003 ext 325. To make an online donation, please visit www.cge-nj.org/donate/

TAPinto Franklin Township is independently owned and operated by  Malik A. Lyons FHS Class of 93’ Graduate. 

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