More Helping Hands: Valentines of Food

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This column was prepared for the January 4, 2006

issue of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between the Lines

Rose Mary Schwarz, executive assistant to Quentin T. Kelly, CEO of

WorldWater & Power Corp., wrote regarding the cover story on efforts

to help Katrina refugees ("Helping Hands: Answering the Call,"

December 22). She called our attention to WorldWater’s efforts:

"One of our employees, Mickey Ingles, has family in Pascagoula,

Mississippi. When he announced plans to go there to help out just a

few days after Katrina hit, his fellow employees collected more than

$900 in about five hours to help defray his travel expenses and to

donate to his family and others who were hard hit by the hurricane."

In October, WorldWater & Power Corp. and NAI Global donated a solar

powered mobile water pumping and purification unit to the residents of

Waveland, Mississippi. The company issued a press release in October,

when the unit left for Waveland. In early December, after Gregg

Barchi, WorldWater’s "man in Waveland," had been there for six weeks,

MSNBC picked up the story, and a small piece appeared in Fortune Small

Business." (Both are featured at the company’s website,

www.worldwater.com). Worldwater was also included in the December

issue of Commerce Magazine’s "Companies That Care" feature.

"We would very much like to be included among your stories about

businesses who have helped," writes Schwarz. "Gregg has some powerful

and disturbing photos of the devastation wrought by the hurricane, and

both he and Mickey have stories of their experiences that might be of

interest to your readers."

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More Helping Hands: Valentines of Food

Donald G. Dickason, volunteer coordinator for the "Valentines of Food"

drive to benefit the Crisis Ministry of Trenton and Princeton, called

our attention to a decrease in donations to food banks, reportedly a

drop of about 50 percent.

This year’s "Valentines of Food Drive" is set for February 7 to 14.

Last year the drive was revitalized, Dickason says, with the support

of the PTOs of the Princeton Regional Schools, and about 11 tons of

food was collected or paid for. This year’s goal is 20 tons of food.

A valentine at any card store costs about $3.99, Dickason points out,

and $3.99 worth of food will feed a Crisis Ministry client family for

a day and a half. Even if people are close to donor fatigue, he says,

it is hard not to be able to provide a $3.99 "Valentine Bag" worth of

food.

Dickason says that McCaffrey’s markets encouraged its patrons to "buy"

Valentine bags of food by adding $3.99 (or multiples thereof) to their

shopping bills. "The credits were accumulated and we got pallets and

pallets of food delivered directly to the Crisis Ministry."

Other collections were by students and parents bringing food to the

schools, to the two sponsoring churches (Nassau Presbyterian and

Trinity Episcopal), and by contributions at the schools, churches, or

at the Rotary Club of Princeton. Last year eight schools formally

participated; this year Dickason hopes the number will be 16 to 20.

For information call the Crisis Ministry at 609-921-2135. Or

E-mail: Dickason31@aol.com


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