Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County announces new mobile pantry

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On Jan. 30, Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Mercer County (JFCS) will reveal its new Mobile Food Pantry to the community.

The process of getting the JFCS Mobile Food Pantry outfitted and on the road has been a six month journey for the agency.

In June, the project was first announced by Executive Director, Michelle Napell. Since this time, the agency worked to secure founding funders and sustaining partners, connected with potential distribution sites, and made logistical plans for the new initiative.

In Mercer County, almost 40,000 men, women and children lack consistent access to enough food to lead healthy, active lives. Often, they don’t know where their next meal is coming from.

JFCS maintains a brick-and-mortar healthy choice pantry at its Alexander Road offices which has grown to meet increasing demand in the region; however, within recent years it became evident that many vulnerable populations were unable to access this resource and others in the county.

“We know that significant obstacles exist within our community, which prevent individuals and families facing hunger from accessing the available resources. In addition to financial challenges, public transportation is limited and some individuals, especially seniors, may have mobility issues,” Executive Director Michelle Napell said.

The JFCS Mobile Food Pantry will bring the resources of the JFCS pantry on the road to locations across Mercer County. At each location, JFCS will park the fully-stocked truck and distribute groceries to those in need. The truck will follow the free, choice-pantry guidelines of the Alexander Road location in alignment with the mission of empowering individuals to make informed choices and care for themselves.

The Mobile Food Pantry includes two refrigerators and a freezer to stock fresh and frozen produce, meats and dairy products, along with standard shelf-staples.

“Even a single bag of groceries allows a single mother struggling to put food on the table for her thee children, to pay an extra bill. For a senior, it provides the peace of mind of not having to maneuver a grocery store with a walker and cart. For a couple with no transportation trying to make the most of a modest budget but limited to shopping at the local convenience store, that bag of healthy, fresh groceries is life changing,” Napell said.

The first distribution stop of the JFCS Mobile Food Pantry will be announced in early January. The agency welcomes founding truck sponsors and community partners to a launch celebration to recognize the collaborative effort that made this vision a reality.

The event will be held on Thursday, Jan. 30, from 4-6:30 p.m. at 707 Alexander Road, Suite 102, Princeton. 

Founding Mobile Food Pantry sponsors include:
Ruth & Martin Clayman; Fran & Larry Sucharow; JFCS Women’s Alliance; The Corella & Bertram F. Bonner Foundation; Firmenich; Pat & Ray Schlaefer; Abrams Foundation; B Creative Digital Media; Church & Dwight; Kaia, Owen & Avery Janofsky; Mercer County; The Wawa Foundation; The Bank of Princeton; Bristol-Myers Squibb; Lennar; Nexus Properties; NJM Insurance Group; Novo Nordisk; NRG Energy; Bobbi & Barry Freedman; Danielle & Jeremy Perlman Family Fund; Joel, Jacqueline, Lauren & Rachel Goldfinger; Richard Goldfinger; Jill & Gregg Jaclin.

To learn more about the JFCS Mobile Food Pantry, contact Helaine Isaacs, resource development associate at 609-987-8100 Ext. 104.

About JFCS:
In a world of stress, health challenges and disconnected families, Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JFCS) of Greater Mercer County offers help, hope, and healing for people of all ages and backgrounds in greater Mercer County.

JFCS is the most comprehensive social service agency in our region with professional counseling, individual and family resources, teen and senior programs and community engagement projects. Visit the JFCS website for a complete listing of services at, www.jfcsonline.org.