Here's Why CUMAC Beatles Night Is So Important

Here's Why CUMAC Beatles Night Is So Important
Read all about it!  Just look below. 
The CUMAC Echo CUMAC logo -high resolution
News from the Front Line of the Fight Against Hunger
January, 2014 - Vol 4, Issue 1
 
Content
95,000 Meals Packed on MLK Day
1,000 Gifts for Impovrished Youth
What it Meals to be a Pantry Before a Polar Vortex
Check Out Our Current Volunteers Opportunities
SNAP Reductions Hurt the Poor and Threaten Feeding Programs
7 Ways to Help in 2014
Special Thanks from the Bruger Family
Gray
Let's Get Social

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Make a Donation
Cuts to SNAP (food stamps)  and extreme cold have brought many new clients to CUMAC's pantries.  Your donation in any amount will ensure we can help all who come to us in need.

Make a donation 

Special Request 
CUMAC's newest program, Place of Promise, needs the following items:

1  gently used loveseat

1 working refrigerator

If you're interested in helping, please call the office: 973-742-5518
Save the Date
Saturday, March 15
CUMAC Beatles Night

March and April
Feinstein Challange

May 5th
Wayne Golf Outing
To Benefit CUMAC 
Check out our events page to learn more or register

 
Dear David,
Happy 2014 to you!  Here at CUMAC, the new year is bringing a lot of growth.  We welcome to our staff a new events coordinator, Leigh Ross; TLC manager, Lina Jaramillo; head teacher, Tiffany Monslave, and classroom aid, Porsalin Hindsman; and two new AmeriCorps members,  Shanee Alston to our Community Closet and Judy Tewiah to our warehouse.  CUMAC is also proud to welcome Issiah Jenkins who has run CUMAC's most recently acquired program, Place of Promise, for over 5 years, as well as house manager, Ed Floss. 

In 2013, our pantry fed 25% more people than the previous year, with 34,000 people coming in need of food.  Growing need led us to open two new pantries in undeserved communities.  We certainly kept busy feeding people, but our work to change lives has also grown and taken new form.  CUMAC is proud to have acquired a new program, The Place of Promise, which provides permanent supportive housing to chronically homeless men and women, including the services of a case manager and house manager.

2014 promises to be just as busy, but we are thankful to have started the year off right!  Special thanks to Little Falls UMC for hosting a CUMAC Fashion Show that brought in over $1,400 and to Rotary District 7940 and to Calvary UMC for both hosting meal packaging events which, combined, brought in an incredible 95,000+ meals to share with the hungry!  
95,000 Meals Packed for the Hungry
MLK's Legacy Lives

This past Martin Luther King Day, Calvary United Methodist Church in Dumont, NJ, and Rotary 7490 -which encompasses Bergen, Passaic and Hudson Counties- both held meal packaging events to provide for the hungry through CUMAC's pantry.  Through their combined efforts, over 95,000 nutritionally

Volunteers packing rice and beans

fortified meals were put together to help feed the hungry during months when donations typically slow, but need remains high.   It was an incredible day and CUMAC is so grateful to everybody who made it happen.  

 

  

Click to read more and learn how to host your own meal packaging event    

 

CUMAC NEEDS PLASTIC BAGS

CUMAC is very low on the paper and plastic grocery bags we use to pack food. Please help us restock by donating your surplus, collecting or spreading word.

Drop off: 223 Ellison St., Paterson, NJ.  Mon.-Friday10am - 3pm, with occasional weekend and evening hours


(for alternative drop off times please call 973-742-5518)
 
 
Wish List Brings Holiday Gifts and Cheer to Area Youth 
 Coordinator Leigh Ross Reflects
Residents of the Family Success Center smiling over their Christmas gifts

This was my first year managing CUMAC's wonderful Wish List program and I was so touched to be part of it. This year we were able to share just shy of 1,000 holiday gifts with children spending their Christmas in homeless shelters or living through a serious illness, and children growing up in impoverished households, many of whom received a gift this year for the first time in their life. CUMAC is one of the only agencies in northern NJ who still matches a child with a donor to make their dreams come true and fill a request for a specific gift. While hectic at times, it was an incredibly joyous experience for me and I would like to thank everyone who gave of their time and resources to bring a little magic to some very deserving children. When you're a kid, that's what Christmas is all about. I'm no kid, but I still love the magic of Christmas.     

 

Click to read more 

 

What it Means to be a Food Pantry Before a Polar Vortex
and how you helped us help Jon
Leaving CUMAC with food and warm winter gear

Always before snow, CUMAC becomes a bustle of activity.  People who have nothing in their homes to eat realize they might be cooped up for days without food and -understandably- they panic.  The line outside our pantry grows and our phones ring all day with calls from dads frightened because they don't have food for their kids; moms worried about bundling small children up for the long, cold walk to CUMAC and begging us to stay open long enough to make the trek worth it; and elderly individuals frantic to make sure we'll stay open if it takes them awhile to find a ride down.

 

I remember one heartbroken young mom, newly arrived from North Carolina, openly crying on the phone as she explained she didn't have anything for her 3 year old daughter -no food, no diapers, no warm clothing. She'd never experienced winter like this, she didn't know anybody at all and she had no idea where to turn.  Could we help?  When she arrived she triumphantly told me that, even though Jersey drivers are scary, she just breathes, pulls over when she needs to, and she made it through 3 highways to Paterson!  She left us that day with food and clothing.  We didn't have diapers or wipes, but like all of our clients, she's welcome to come back again if she needs to.   

 

Click here to read more  

 

Current Volunteer Opportunities 
CUMAC Needs Your Help!
 

Volunteers are needed to help with the following projects.  Follow the links to learn more and consider lending your time and talent to helping feed people and change lives!  

CUMAC is open to volunteers Monday through Friday from 10am to 3pm, with occasional weekend and evening hours available.   Our building is easy to access from NJ routes 80 and 4, as well as the Garden State Parkway and off-street parking is available.CUMAC gratefully accepts both groups and individuals, to review our volunteer opportunities and guidelines please check out our website:www.cumacecho.org.    

 

Feel free to inquire for more information: volunteer@cumacecho.org.

SNAP Reductions Hurt the Poor
and Threaten Feeding Programs
It's a few minutes before 9:00.  I pull up to CUMAC's warehouse building in the heart of downtown Paterson to a familiar view: lines of people, extending half way down the street, waiting for food assistance.  Just a few months ago, such a view might make me stop in awe - but not these days.  Lines out the door are just a regular day at CUMAC.  But, why? Isn't the economy improving?  While some would say the economy is in better shape, looking out our door makes me think twice about that statement.  The reality is, while the economy has picked up, unemployment rates are still hovering around 8.4% in NJ.  For those who can find a job, they're working fewer hours or getting paid less than they were just a couple of years ago.  Factor in the rising cost of
Long lines outside of the CUMAC pantry
living and cuts government aid, and things start to add up: making ends meat is tough.  And with more cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) on the horizon, things are bound to get tougher.  Every day I see people doing what they can to survive; searching for help wherever it's available.  That's why our pantry numbers continue to skyrocket.  As Congress debates the future of SNAP, there's a good chance the lines will continue to grow. 

Seven Ways to Help in 2014
We have some big plans for 2014 and we hope you'll be a part of it. Thanks to your support, last year was a HUGE success. In the face of a major food shortage and record need in our community, you offered a helping hand and allowed us to reach more people than ever. Over 2,000 volunteers put in over 30,000 hours of time to help feed people & change lives -- and we could not be more grateful. Help make this year even more special: make a new year's resolution to get more involved with CUMAC and the fight against hunger!  There are plenty of ways you can help, from hosting collections to giving a few minutes of your time as a virtual volunteer.

 
Special Thanks from the Bruger Family

On behalf of Carl, Lynne and our entire family, I would like to say thank you for your expressions of sympathy on the death of our son, Pete.  We felt the warmth of your hugs and peace from your prayers.  We will be forever grateful for the outpouring of love and support for our family and for CUMAC.  We ask that you continue to keep us in prayer in the weeks and months ahead.

 

With love,

Pat




Thank you for all you do to help CUMAC feed people and change lives, we couldn't do so much without your incredible support!

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Sincerely,
 
Signature, Stephanie 
Stephanie Ames
CUMAC