Local Soup Kitchen Gets Early Holiday Gift

An anonymous donor purchased a new industrial sized freezer for Toni's Kitchen last week.


A recent donation to a local food pantry will continue to give the gift of giving for years to come.

On Nov. 28, a brand new freezer was installed at Toni’s Kitchen, a local soup kitchen in St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. The double-door, industrial sized freezer was donated anonymously by a resident, said Director of Outreach at the kitchen Anne Mernin. 

“They just asked us what we wanted,” said Mernin, “and we told them we really needed a freezer. So they said, ‘Okay, we’ll go and purchase one.’”

The volunteer-run soup kitchen was debating about buying a new freezer for months, said Mernin yesterday as she glanced at handful of large turkeys and chicken cutlets already stored in the freezer. However, the $3,700 price tag was a major deterrent which caused the kitchen to hold off on the purchase. 

“We were dreaming of [a freezer]” before the donation, laughed Mernin. “But it’s been an expensive year for us,” noting that the soup kitchen has added Sunday evening meals and a nutritional program in recent months. 

While the soup kitchen already had three smaller freezers, the large storage capacity of the new unit, tucked away in a back room among soon-to-be-served food and donated clothing, will increase the kitchen’s storage volume by about 50 percent.

“We serve so many meals every week that we go through a lot of food,” said Mernin.

On Saturday alone, she added, soup kitchen served approximately 90 meals. 

“You just never know how many people are coming through the doors ... for a meal."

Meals are served for those in need on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., and Sunday from 5 to 6 p.m. 

Toni’s Kitchen is always in need of food donations. Go to http://www.toniskitchen.org/support/food/ for the week’s special requests. 

The soup kitchen accepts donations Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., and Sundays between 4 and 6 p.m. 

For more information about donating to the soup kitchen, call (973) 932-0768.

scarletxknight December 05, 2012 at 03:06 AM
thats great...awesome act of kindness
Robin Hoffman December 06, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Great story!


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