by John Zornow
They arrive early three mornings a week and start the preparation. Of about 20 volunteers their are 12 “regulars,” sharing their time and talent with the less fortunate of the community.
The Newark Free Lunch program started 21 years ago with the efforts of the late Art Deys and his wife Elsie. At first it was a Tuesday only affair, but eventually grew to Wednesday and Thursday as well. The program is a cooperative ministry of Newark churches and civic groups and takes place at Emmanuel Methodist Church, cor. East Miller St. And Colton Ave.
According to Manny Crespo, Program Director, 75%of the food comes from Foodlink, Inc. And the rest, direct donations from Wegmans and Wal-Mart. In addition, supplies must be purchased with money donated by individuals, churches, and other community groups.
Crespo adds: “Our lunch program is a connecting place providing vital companionship for those in need and those who are lonely. Each of the persons is a child of God, and is treated as a person of sacred worth. They are the persons that God has called us to serve.”
Citizens are asked to consider supporting the Free Lunch Program. Your gifts and donations as well as volunteer hours will play a vital role in supporting the ongoing operations of this important ministry.
Manny Crespo may be reached at 315-521-2919.