Helping Myself by Helping Others

Toni's 2

It was the end of March. Except for some walks around the block, I hadn’t gone anywhere or even left the house for several weeks. And then I received an email from the County Freeholders — We Need Your Help! Support Toni’s Kitchen.

The email continued:  We urge you to support Toni’s Kitchen as they are being overwhelmed with the growing demands for their services. Toni’s Kitchen provides food and other critical services to those in the greater Montclair/Bloomfield Community. They are now providing groceries and fresh produce to students who receive free or reduced priced meals from the Montclair Public Schools as well as Senior Citizens and medically at risk residents.

I made a donation.

And then I signed up to help. 

First time I packed take-out meals (a bit strange for me because the main dish was ham).

Next time I was outside giving out groceries, which I’ve done several times now.

Toni's 1Time after that I packed bags with groceries.

Another time, I packed produce into bags to be given out with the groceries.

Today I packed bags with oatmeal to go into the grocery bags.

I’ve been helping out once or twice a week. Shifts are 2 hours and I alternate between  “backpacking” – which is indoors packing food bags or meals – or food distribution, which is outside.

I’m working from home. Helping out at Toni’s Kitchen is a welcome relief. It gets me out of the house, away from my computer, doing something worthwhile.


Message from the Social Action Committee Chairpersons

Please consider helping Toni’s Kitchen. The money you donate will go to wholesale purchases of the specific food and supplies they require. Toni’s also needs volunteers for packing and distributing food and for food deliveries.

To donate, go to: donate to Toni’s Kitchen
To volunteer, go to: Toni’s kitchen registration

Sarita Eisenberg & Audrey Levitin


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Sarita Eisenberg

Sarita Eisenberg

Sarita is co-editor of ShomreiWeek (weekly newsletter) and the Kol Emunah Blog. She holds a Ph.D. in Language Science and is an associate professor in the Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders at Montclair State University. She lives in Montclair with her husband Lou Hammerman.
Sarita Eisenberg

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