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NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—Rutgers Against Hunger has teamed up with New Brunswick’s Play S.A.F.E to create the new "Snack Pack Service Project" this summer, made possible by donations from ShopRite, the Embrace Kids Foundation, Johanna foods, and Affinity Federal Credit Union.
Rutgers Against Hunger (RAH) collaborated with New Student Orientation to host a community service opportunity for students while they were at orientation.
RAH Program Coordinator, Julia Crimi says, “RAH is an organization created to conduct research, encourage activism, connect New Jersey residents to food pantries and soup kitchens, and increase awareness of hunger issues in our community. To donate and learn more, visit rah.rutgers.edu”
Rutgers University New Student Orientation took part during its 14 orientation sessions. Incoming students participated during their two-day orientation by packing bags of healthy snacks, which were then delivered to New Brunswick children the following day.
The summer Play S.A.F.E program is now in it’s 25th year and it is a free recreational program offered by the City of New Brunswick’s Youth Services System (YSS).
Over several weeks, children up to age 13 can participate in various activities, field trips, academic help, and awareness programs.
As part of the Play S.A.F.E program, children receive free breakfast and lunch daily provided by the Federal Summer Food Service Program.
The Snack Pack Service Project provided those children with additional food. It was projected that by the end of the summer, the 1,700 children participating would receive more than 24,000 snack packs consisting of more than 96,000 food items.
Crimi said, “The children that we service through the Play S.A.F.E. summer program receive breakfast and lunch through the Federal Summer Food Service Program. Our snacks supplement the program.”
Affinity Federal Credit Union Foundation approached Rutgers Against Hunger and agreed to support the snack pack program. The credit union recently opened a branch in downtown New Brunswick.
The Embrace Kids foundation was approached by RAH because of their long history with Rutgers University. Formerly known as the Center for Kids with Cancer and Blood Disorders, Embrace Kids is the beneficiary of the annual Rutgers Dance Marathon.
Executive Director Glenn Jenkins said, “Embrace Kids has been working hard to expand the foundation’s reach and impact, with a particular focus on increased resources for minority and under privileged kids.”
Embrace Kids helped secure support for the Snack Pack program from two of their sponsors, ShopRite and Johanna Foods.
Officials say that Rutgers Against Hunger and Play S.A.F.E. hope to continue this program in the future.