Scrappy. Nimble. Resilient. Small but mighty. Those are just some of the words we’ve heard from others this past year when describing Franciscan Charities - - the most recent from the folks at NorthJersey.com in this wonderful feature detailing how our donors, volunteers and staff regrouped, shifted and jumped at opportunities to keep our food service and other programs alive in the midst of a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic.
Says writer Julia Martin:
“The tiny nonprofit, whose only full-time employees are a manager, cook and social worker, found a kitchen where they could prepare meals off-site and filled the back of a van with hundreds of bagged meals. To limit the exposure of volunteers and recipients, they reduced the number of food distribution days from five to three, and with each meal, included a ‘pantry bag’ filled with staples to tide recipients over.
In the early weeks, information on contagion was so limited that volunteers resembled astronauts in hooded Tyvek suits. With masks hard to find, they passed out bandanas to those on line.
The group hasn't missed a single day during the pandemic, (President Greg) Langan said. And the need keeps growing: A socially distanced line of as many as 200 begins forms well before the noon opening, even on the coldest days, snaking down 16th Avenue and around the corner.”
Name-calling? We’ll take it.
As we enter 2021, with the ongoing support of donors and persistence of our staff and volunteers, Franciscan Charities is poised to take on whatever the world throws at us.
Bring it on.