RED BANK – As a kick off to its October fundraising gala and to celebrate 30 years of dedicated service to the community, Lunch Break is having a party from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, at The Downtown.
All are welcome to join both the celebration of Lunch Break’s efforts to fight hunger on the home front. The evening will include drink specials and live music featuring The Haven with special guest Susan Haugenes. There is a $10 donation per person and a 50/50 raffle to raise funds for Lunch Break; the winner will be announced Oct. 21 at the gala.
The Downtown is located at 10 W. Front St.
Lunch Break was founded in 1983 as the first Monmouth County soup kitchen and pantry by a group of concerned citizens who committed themselves to freely providing life’s basic necessities to community members in need, and currently is the largest and most accessible such facility.
Today, Executive Director Gwendolyn Love, her staff and more than 2,000 volunteers continue that original commitment and so much more.
Last year, 56,487 hot meals were served; 7,624 emergency food pantry distributions went to families; and there were 8,879 distributions of clothing, including outfits for job seekers preparing for interviews and new-found jobs.
Lunch Break delivers daily meals to the homebound, has cooking classes for children, a summer community gardener’s market, and a back-to-school distribution of backpacks and school supplies. There is a monthly Dinner and a Classic Movie night for the Boys and Girls Club; Thanksgiving and Christmas meals; special Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas food baskets; both toy distributions and a senior gift program during the holidays; and a monthly dinner night for the community. Social service providers are hosted on-site; there is an Internet café for job searches; and following Super Storm Sandy, Lunch Break has become an integral part of local disaster relief efforts.
All this and more is free to Lunch Break guests and is accomplished with a small paid staff and the thousands of dedicated volunteers, and is supported through the generosity of residents and many organizations and businesses in the greater Red Bank area.
The gala will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 21 at the Navesink County Club, Middletown.
To learn more about Lunch Break, its activities and events, go to www.lunchbreak.org. Lunch Break can also be followed on Facebook, Twitter and can be reached at 732-747-8577 or firstname.lastname@example.org.