HACKENSACK, NJ - Sunday morning volunteers from Hasbrouck Heights participated in the Meadowlands Chamber of Commerce's eighth annual Basket Brigade at the North Jersey Friendship House in Hackensack.
Volunteers included over 40 members of the Hasbrouck Heights marching band and music program, alumni, and parents. The annual event provides a complete Thanksgiving meal for local families in need. Each meal is assembled by volunteers and anonymously delivered on the weekend before Thanksgiving.
The Basket Brigade was started by the Chamber’s Contractors and Building Services Committee after Super Storm Sandy hit in 2012. It was an effort to deliver Thanksgiving dinners to those who were devastated, primarily in the Moonachie and Little Ferry area.
Now in its eighth year, the outreach continues to grow. According to Anthony Guzzo of the Contractors and Building Services Committee, 330 baskets were assembled, which were delivered to individuals, food pantries, and veteran associations in the area. In addition, the outreach has provided over 2,500 baskets to families in need and donated over $10,000 to food pantries through over the course of seven years.
"Not only do we continually increase the number of baskets we deliver each year, but our volunteer count also continues to grow," said Judith Ross, Vice President, Meadowlands Chamber.
The contents in each basket included a turkey, stuffing, corn, green beans, mashed potatoes, gravy, yams, corn bread mix, cranberry sauce, pie, and a roasting pan. Also, included is a note that reads: This comes to you from someone who cares about you. All we ask is that you take care of yourself well enough to be able to do this for someone else one day.
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