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HOLMDEL/MIDDLETOWN, NJ: It is in times like this that we feel the real community spirit we are blessed with in the towns we live in. During this unprecedented time battling COVID-19 in our own lives, and feeling for those on the front lines, we can sometimes feel helpless to do our part.

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GREAT NEWS: The good news is community leader Linda Lautenberg of Holmdel, has made it easy for us to make a significant impact. Lautenberg had an idea and put it into action, enabling us all to pitch in and help our local frontline healthcare workers, first responders and small businesses.

Only two days ago Lautenberg launched a Facebook site called FLAG, an acronym for Front Line Appreciation Group. They have raised $4055. in two days, are already delivering food, making masks, and so much more...

The impact of FLAG is already making a positive difference.  Holmdel resident Margo Vallone heard the call for medical masks. She got busy making masks at home with her two teenage daughters who both help to organize the materials. Vallone comments, "Holmdel is an incredible community of people and friends who don't think twice about supporting one another or a meaningful cause. Truly a special place."  Margo has the sewing machine running if anyone would like to volunteer to sew regular masks (not the N95's), you can email Margo at

Check out FLAG on Facebook, and join the movement to help the front lines in your community. Donate at:  VENMO: @FLAG-HolmdelMiddletown If you would like to volunteer contact Linda Lautenberg at 

Public service announcement from founder of HOLMDEL/MIDDLETOWN FLAG; Linda Lautenberg: 

FLAG (Front Line Appreciation Group) is a group dedicated to helping to feed our front health care workers during the coronavirus pandemic while also keeping our local restaurants in business.
The first FLAG chapter was created by Liz Bernich of Chatham and Gina McGuire of Madison. As of 3/27 they've raised over $66k, paid over $10k to local restaurants and distributed 1,455 meals! The model was quickly replicated in Summit with similar success.
Hackensack Meridian Health Bayshore Medical Center and Riverview Medical Center: Night shifts are especially under stress because of the new protocols in place, limited cafeteria hours and inability to leave their unit once shifts begin to contain contamination.
The ER is also overwhelmed. Now retired healthcare professionals, medical professionals from other specialties and recent med-school grads are asked to join the fight.
A show of support and appreciation from our community would go along way to keeping spirits up!!!
How much better if we use the funds to purchase meals from our local eateries who are feeling the economic strain of shelter in place? Now that's a community coming together!
Additionally, hospital staff will welcome curbside drop off donations of portable snacks (ie granola bars, etc) and water, which we can also purchase with donated funds. Sounds like a good use of at-home high school and college students!
WE CAN DO THIS! Let's show our front line workers and local eateries we care! I'm open to suggestions for restaurants on this page. (And to anyone who wants to help) Please spread the word! You can email Linda directly at 

Donate at:  VENMO: @FLAG-HolmdelMiddletown

Thank you!
Linda Lautenberg

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