Sugarplums may be nice for Christmas, but HomeFront’s clients need more than sweet treats and that is why Lawrence Township police officers are collecting food for the nonprofit group’s food pantry.
For the third consecutive year, Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 209, which represents Lawrence Township police officers, is gathering food for homeless and working poor individuals HomeFront seeks to help.
The lodge’s food drive has been ongoing during December and will end Dec. 23. Collection boxes have been set up at Dunkin’ Donuts, 1278 Lawrenceville Road, the Lawrence Senior Center, 30 Darrah Lane East, and ShopRite at the Mercer Mall.
Starbucks will be collecting food from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 23 at the store at 2673 Main St., across from the Lawrenceville School. Police officers will be on hand to chat with donors, who will be given complimentary coffee when they drop off food donations.
Donors can bring canned protein, soup, low sugar cereal, peanut butter, jelly, shelf-stable milk and juice, pasta sauce, boxes of pasta, rice, macaroni and cheese, and canned vegetables.
Lawrence Township police officers are committed to the community in a variety of ways, Municipal Manager Kevin Nerwinski said. The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 209 and Policemen’s Benevolent Association Local 119, the unions that represent the officers, consistently support local and national charities, he said.
“The FOP’s food drive for HomeFront is just one of many important efforts by them to give back and provide support to organizations that rely on donations,” Nerwinski said, adding that “we are proud” of the officers and how they serve the community professionally and charitably.
HomeFront officials said they are grateful the lodge’s representatives approached the nonprofit group several years ago to help fill the food pantry, said Sarah Steward, HomeFront’s chief operating officer.
“It is a great partnership. It shows how committed the police are to Lawrence that they reached out to HomeFront,” Steward said.
HomeFront’s food pantry helps about 1,000 families every month and there is an ongoing need for food donations, she said. HomeFront is grateful to all donors to the food pantry, not just the police officers, she added.
It is especially gratifying that people are sharing and keeping in mind families that are living on the edge, Steward said. HomeFront cares for the most vulnerable families that have trouble making ends meet, she said.
For more information about HomeFront, visit www.homefrontnj.org