PANDEMIC RESPONSE

Now that we are four months into this Pandemic it looks like the TOUCH New Jersey Food Alliance has good control of the restrictions brought on by Covid 19 given the fact that we have continued to distribute food every week without dropping the ball even once and have not had a single instance of transmission of the virus. In and of itself that would be laudable, but TOUCH has risen the bar to an amazing height. Last week, the TOUCH New Jersey Food Alliance distributed over 40,000 pounds of food from its location in North Camden. That’s right, 40,000 pounds.
TOUCH is able to send families home with an average of 60 pounds of nutritious food including dairy, produce, meat, dry goods, bread and bakery. Much of this product is delivered by the three trailers that come to Camden each week and leave us with pallet after pallet of boxed food that is seamlessly distributed to our clients. So, while the North Camden indigenous are taken care of TOUCH has also teamed with Miguel’s Pharmacy in Cramer Hill every Tuesday and Wednesday where an average of 1500 pounds of food are distributed.

And all of this is in addition to the Freeholders of Camden County/TOUCH New Jersey Food Alliance partnership that rotates from the Camden County College to Antioch Baptist Church to St. Joseph’s Pro Cathedral every Friday, distributing dairy, fruit and vegetables to those in need. On a recent Friday 423 cars showed up to receive the goodies loaded into their trunks by a many  volunteers from the county, social media and word of mouth.

TOUCH’s response to the Pandemic is to excel in its effort to accomplish its mission to “fight hunger one person at a time.” These days, more and more families are benefiting as a result of that mission. We are extremely thankful for the additional food supplied by our major partner, Philabundance. It is only through their generosity and volunteers that TOUCH is able to feed so many in need. Please stay tuned for additional food events throughout the area.

 

Hundreds Expected to Receive Free Groceries at Food Bank in Camden, New Jersey

Read full article here.

PANDEMIC RESPONSE Summer Schedule: Click Image for Large View

PANDEMIC RESPONSE: For Other Pantries. Click Image for Large View

Our Story

TOUCH New Jersey, Inc. a food distribution alliance was formed in 2003 operating as a “shopping food pantry” in and around the city of Camden, growing gradually and incorporating in 2007. TOUCH New Jersey has been operating in North Camden since 2015 and has impacted the local residents to the extent that over 10,000 pounds of food are distributed each Wednesday. TOUCH New Jersey addresses poverty in the poorest neighborhood of the poorest city in America by providing food and resources to individuals and needy families that survive at or below the poverty level.

The present all-volunteer food Pantry is based in the New Beginnings Church at 549 State Street. The pantry is open each Wednesday for 4 hours, allowing low-income, elderly and disabled residents to “shop” for fresh fruit, vegetables, meats, dairy, bread and other food staples. TOUCH’s operations are staffed by volunteers, currently “rescuing” and distributing food to an average of 350 families per week in all of the outreaches. As a certified agency with Philabundance, TOUCH New Jersey receives foodstuffs from ACME supermarkets throughout South Jersey as well as the Walmarts and the Philabundance Produce Hub in South Philadelphia.

TOUCH New Jersey over the years maintains the original food pantry and has become a food distribution ALLIANCE with many charitable organizations.  TOUCH New Jersey also holds positions on committees and boards for Camden based social initiatives.

 

 

From the Executive Director

From the Executive Director,  June 2020

Nothing compares to the experiences presented to society in the year 2020…and the same can be said for TOUCH New Jersey!

In short order we have dealt with a pandemic that has shaken our wellbeing, our economy and in short order, our way of life. While juggling the health requirements necessary to address a spreading virus an outrageous act of police violence committed in the name of “Protect and Serve” ignited civil rights anger and threatens to challenge the tenants of racism still plainly evident throughout our land.

In the midst of these society markers TOUCH has been given an unusual opportunity to act as a lotion to the scars that threaten to inflict even more pain to those in need of food. On a typical, non-pandemic week, as a Philabundance agency, TOUCH would pickup, deliver, register, stock and distribute an average of 12,000 pounds of non-prepared food in Camden, New Jersey. Gradually, TOUCH was establishing a coterie of partnerships in both the non-profit and for-profit environment using its food currency in an effort to establish itself as a “go to” food outreach in the Camden environment.

Then March 2020 came and commonality was obliterated. Unemployment exacerbated, almost all interpersonal opportunities disappeared, government shut down, the economy nosedived and while society stayed at home the needy were left without sources for basic needs given their limited resources. While the months of March and April left TOUCH with scaled down resources given the limited ability to pick up food from the Acme Markets which had been stripped barren we survived and never closed for a single day. Seemingly as a reward for our dedication our prayers were answered and programing administered by Philabundance and funded by the USDA showered and abundance of daily food deliveries of produce, milk, dairy and meats. Such deliveries allowed TOUCH to increase its feeding opportunities from one day per week to three days per wee., It also generated additional feeding sources operating simultaneous to the State Street Pantry. Currently TOUCH is partnering weekly with the Camden County Freeholders in rotating locations throughout Camden County where an average of 300 families are served nutritious foods to address hunger needs.

Also, TOUCH has directed foods for the needy to Marlton, N.J., Clementon, N.J., East Camden, N.J., Mt. Airy in Philadelphia, Camden County College in Blackwood, N.J. and soon will provide feeding opportunities in Collingswood and Lawnside. In the midst of this growth TOUCH has received coverage from Channel 6 News, National Public Radio, Eyewitness News, the Courier Post and recently received an unabashed endorsement from United States Congressman Donald Norcross. TOUCH has stepped forward and with the help of Philabundance has taken a major step towards fulfilling its mission of “challenging hunger one person at a time.”

As the effect of he virus seems to flatline and society sheds its somnolence TOUCH will move back toward its typical feeding system as we look to retain the new-found partnerships with the likes of The South Jersey Food Bank which has been a Godsend with its federal-based foodstuffs necessary for distribution in the North Camden neighborhoods.

No depiction of the recent history of TOUCH would be complete without a personal thanks to those TOUCH volunteers that continued to make TOUCH work without missing a single scheduled food distribution opportunity. My heartfelt thanks to Jon’ah, Paul, P Diddy, Gunny, Carl, Mike, Michelle, Dorrie, Nupur, Chink, Debbie, Chris, Alexis, Juanita, Jim, Michele, Mike L, Mark H and all other volunteers who helped TOUCH perform beyond my wildest dreams. You are truly heroes and should be recognized accordingly.

Stay well and look for continued help when the need for food becomes critical. It’s what we do!

PARTNERSHIPS MAKE TOUCH WORK

OUR GALLERY

Challenging Hunger in the Camden County Community

Phone: 856-803-3030 or email gcd1210@gmail.com

Store Hours: Wednesdays 9am to 1pm. Could change for holidays or dangerous weather.

OUR MISSION

Challenging Hunger in the Camden County Community

FEED THE NEEDY IN THE SENIOR COMMUNITY

Let us remember our senior community and show our love to our elderly by feeding them.

PROVIDE NUTRITION FOR STRUGGLING FAMILIES

Nutrition is for everyone. Help us nurture the families who need our help.

PROVIDE EMERGENCY FOOD FOR THOSE IN CRISIS

We can lessen people’s crisis and make them feel loved by providing emergency food.

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

PLEASE DONATE

TOUCH New Jersey, Inc. was formed in 2003 operating as a “shopping food pantry” in and around the city of Camden, growing gradually and incorporating in 2007. TOUCH New Jersey has been operating in North Camden for the past three years and has impacted the local residents to the extent that over 10,000 pounds of food is distributed each Wednesday.

Introducing TOUCH New Jersey

Appreciation Dinner 2019 Address by Gerald Davis

Our Financial/Project Partners

READY TO BECOME A VOLUNTEER ?

TOUCH New Jersey coordinates and administers an all-volunteer food Pantry which is based in the New Beginnings Church at 549 State Street. The pantry is open each Wednesday for 4 hours, allowing low-income, elderly and disabled residents to “shop” for fresh fruit, vegetables, meats, dairy, bread and other food staples. TOUCH’s operations are staffed by volunteers, currently “rescuing” and distributing an average of 9500 pounds of food per week.

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