a 501(c)(3) Organization
Fighting Food Insecurity in New Jersey
Message from the President
April 26, 2023
I hope you’re all having a great Spring so far!
I’m honored to be elected President by our esteemed Board of Directors, and I can’t thank Bob and Charlie White enough, both as Founders of SOHNJ and for their years of dedicated passion in helping our community. I’m thrilled that they are both still a very active part of our leadership team!
I’m actually excited to be working with basically the same team to put together some amazing events this year. We are putting back the fun in fundraiser, while also helping to support our local food-insecure families that are finding it difficult to make ends meet in this post Covid inflation economy.
Our first softball event is happening June 10th at Del Val High School. Our All-Star Team will be playing the Del Val Staff to raise money and food donations for our local pantries! This will be a fun, family day including food and attractions fir all!
Please stay tuned for a fall event similar to what we put together for AutumnFEST!
I also want to send a special thank you to all of our Sponsors, Donors, Players, and Volunteers! There’s also room for other individuals, groups, and businesses to join us! Please fill out our contact form if you’d like more information on how you can make a difference… locally!
In Health & Happiness,
Jay M. Arancio - President
Strike Out Hunger NJ
Strike Out Hunger NJ is a 501(c)(3) organization. Donors can deduct contributions under IRC Section 170.
Checks can be made payable to:
“Strike Out Hunger NJ”
We fight for people who are Food Insecure all year long and need your help.
Statistics that were already shameful for a country of our wealth have reached frightening proportions. Per the latest estimates from Feeding America, as many as 50 million Americans are facing hunger this year and 17 million are children.
It isn’t just children suffering.
SOHNJ has been a supporter of Meals on Wheels since our founding, both with financial grants from the organization as well as personal support from our members. Meals on Wheels relies heavily on local volunteer groups for their Blizzard Bag program, which is an emergency bag meal in case of bad weather. With these groups not able to meet, the bags have not been assembled. As we have learned, the elderly are particularly at risk from both this awful disease and the hunger it has brought. In spite of all the problems, I can thank COVID for reaffirming my belief in the basic decency of people, particularly in our area. From weekly runs to bring food to our local pantries to donations that just show up in our mailbox, you have responded. The generosity of those who have donated – sometimes without knowing if they have a job in a month – has been incredible. And now vaccines and the hope they bring are coming.
But we have a long six months between us and the predictions of when the vaccines will be widely distributed. The economic impacts of COVID will also not disappear just because a shot is available. Since the last major economic setback in 2008, it took almost 10 years for the numbers of food insecure to drop to pre-2008 levels.
You can help. Not just with money, although that is always appreciated. Check with your local food pantries. Find out what they need, and that includes your time. I firmly believe we can change the world, and to do so we only need to start in our backyard.
The birth of a noble mission: Game 1 in 2014. Tournament organizer Bob White, Frenchtown Mayor Warren Cooper, Milford Mayor Jim Gallos, and Tournament organizer Charlie White
In the fall of 2013, Milford residents Charlie and Bob White met with Frenchtown Mayor Warren Cooper to propose a challenge softball game – Milford vs. Frenchtown – to benefit local food pantries. In May of the following year, the two teams met in what would be the start of Strikeout Hunger NJ, although it would be another five years before the game expanded to include other towns. In those five years, the two municipalities would raise over two and a half tons of food for the pantries in Frenchtown and Milford. They would also increase the awareness that hunger is real, and it isn’t just in third-world countries. It lives here, in New Jersey, within our communities, and with our neighbors.
Current statistics from FeedingAmerica.org put the number of people who are food insecure in Hunterdon County at almost 8,000. That number includes seniors, children, and employed but underpaid. Many households are but one paycheck or one serious medical condition away from being food insecure, and the numbers are rising.
No one should have to go to bed hungry at night, and no child should ever have to wonder when they will get their next meal, particularly in a country as wealthy as this one. Even if we cannot stop hunger altogether, our mission is to fill the local food pantries, so those struggling to survive in our area have access to the necessities of food and household goods.
How does Strike Out Hunger NJ meet our goal of battling food insecurity and raising awareness:
Funds are raised from our annual softball tournaments and throughout the year, which is shared with local organizations to help battle food insecurity in our area. Some recipients have included:
Meals on Wheels of Hunterdon County - Blizzard Bag Program
Norwescap, Phillipsburg, NJ
The Village Pantry at PCOM - Milford, NJ
The Presbyterian Church of Frenchtown Food Pantry
The Family Harvest Success Center, Flemington, NJ - Annual Veggiepallooza
United Way of Hunterdon County - Flemington Fire Victims 11/23/21
The Outreach Connection, Califon, NJ - Freezers for pantry
Firth Youth Center - Phillipsburg, NJ - Seven-day/week lunch program
River of Life Food Patry - Phillipsburg, NJ