Monday, May 27, 2024

After a Wrecking Building Fire, Open Cupboard Food Pantry, Food Donation Non-Profit, Calls for Funding

Last updated Thursday, April 4, 2024 09:39 ET

Open Cupboard Food Pantry, a staple in New Jersey communities, experienced a challenging fire in February 2024; to rebuild the organization, the non-profit is calling for funding.

Clinton, New Jersey, 04/04/2024 / SubmitMyPR /

After its establishment in 1993, Open Cupboard Food Pantry (OCFP) has steadfastly improved the communities in Hunterdon and Warren counties, providing essentials such as food and clothing to impoverished residents. OCFP’s unique approach extends beyond food donations; the organization holds a thrift store space where eager clothing and house decor enthusiasts can browse for hours, obtain affordable, one-of-a-kind objects, and contribute to the cause. The non-profit had quickly become a staple in its region, gaining recognition and appreciation from numerous community members.

Just when everything seemed too good to be true, and OCFP was thriving, an enormous fire got in the way of the organization, depriving OCFP of its Clinton-based location. After a successful over-30-year journey, February marked a crucial turning point, forcing the Board and volunteers of OCFP to pivot.

Thanks to the tech-savviness of Jennifer Tavormina, the Executive Director, OCFP’s documents, corresponding, and crucial records were transferred online, enabling a swift and fairly effortless location change.

In 2023, the organization’s pantry was visited 7,000 times, and Jennifer’s projection for 2024 was nearing 12,500 visits. The fire forced a complete temporary standstill on OCFP, destroying every single food item, clothing piece, and household artifact kept in the organization’s storage. “In the first five days, we rotated and transferred to a second pantry we established in late 2022. We’ve still got a long way to go until we’re fully up and running, but I think it’s remarkable how quickly we were able to pivot,” adds Jennifer.

Afterward, Open Cupboard Food Pantry was gifted a free-of-charge space by a local medical facility, Hunterdon Health. The current arrangement will allow OCFP to operate without excess rental costs for a year.

“We’ve graciously been granted this space, and that’s one of the main reasons we were able to pick up where we left off in just a few weeks. However, we’re now looking to relocate to a larger, at least 6,000 square foot space,” adds Jennifer. “While this temporary solution is perfect to allow us to keep donating food across our communities, we’re excited to have a place of our own where we can serve even more people.”

Created to address the dire needs of New Jersey communities, Open Cupboard Food Pantry has donated over 2 million pounds of food since 1993, assisting over 8,600 people from 22 neighborhoods. After giving back to needful residents for over 30 years, OCFP, a non-profit based solely on private donations, is seeking funding and investments, hoping to rebuild the virtuous agency.

In addition to financial grants, supporters and community members can donate physical items such as clothing and household objects. These objects end up on the cozy OCFP shelves, enticing visitors and customers and providing an additional cash flow to the organization. On the 16th of May, OCFP will also host its annual gala. People can support by attending the event or providing sponsorship, ultimately contributing to OCFP’s mission.

“Currently, we have around 140 volunteers committed to donating food to underserved communities. I don’t want to lose them. To ensure we can still operate, we need substantial resources that are too time-consuming to gather without support,” says Jennifer. “We’re looking to rent or rebuild a high-quality facility that will propel the growth of our mission. The fire was a huge obstacle to overcome, but I know nothing will stop our purpose.”

Media Contact

Name: Jennifer Tavormina

Email: [email protected]

Original Source of the original story >> After a Wrecking Building Fire, Open Cupboard Food Pantry, Food Donation Non-Profit, Calls for Funding