SUMMIT, NJ - 'Pathways Cooks', a program of The Connection that provides -- free of charge -- support, wellness and educational programs for women with cancer, has received a $5,000 donation via the 12th Annual "Stad’s Crabfest" held in Westfield, where 125 guests enjoyed a feast from the sea in support of cancer-related charities.

"Stad’s Crabfest" began over a decade ago in the backyard of its Board President Bill Baton, and is “devoted to raising awareness and enhancing the quality of life of those affected by cancer, focusing on the journey from diagnosis through resolution.”

Each year, "Stad’s Crabfest" selects a different organization that supports its mission. Pathways Cooks was proud to be the primary recipient of "Stad’s Crabfest" in 2014. The primary recipient of the Crabfest this year was Camp Kesem which provides a free five-day summer sleep-away camp for children who have a parent diagnosed with cancer.

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Pathways Cooks was uniquely honored to be a secondary recipient this year.

Started in 2011, Pathways Cooks’ volunteers, currently managed by Ann Karr, have prepared and delivered over 10,000 delicious, nutrient-dense meals to women undergoing cancer treatment and their families, free of charge.

The many Pathways Cooks recipients rave about the healthy soups, grain salads, a variety of three entrees, veggies and desserts delivered by volunteers to their doors.  The program eases the burden on women going through treatment who do not have the energy to plan, shop for or prepare meals.

One Pathways recipient said, “What a blessing you have been to our family.  The nutritious, delicious meals that are cheerfully delivered on Wednesdays have been a lifeline for our family.  It is clear that each part of the meals is planned, prepared and packaged with love.”  

Pathways Cooks is one of many support programs offered, with other initiatives including:

'Pathways Team SOS' where cancer survivors and supporters paddle on Lake Parsippany every Monday night from April to September, enjoying a “floating support group” while benefiting from focused exercise;

Pathways Therapeutic Yoga, with complimentary classes offered twice a week at The Connection, giving women with a history of any cancer the opportunity to manage stress while increasing strength and flexibility;

Pathways Women’s Cancer Teaching Project, with breast and gynecological cancer survivors training healthcare professionals and students about the realities of living with cancer, and:

Pathways Financial Assistance Fund, which provides direct financial support for women in our service area with cancer who are in dire need of paying basic necessities.

To make a tax-deductible donation to Pathways, visit theconnectiononline.org.

To learn more about Pathways, contact Pathways Director, Lesley Andrews, at (908) 273-4242, ext. 154 or contact pathways@theconnectiononline.org.