- Give the gift of food security – every dollar donated provides 1 meal for a neighbor. You have the power to make a difference in someone’s life this holiday season.
- Volunteer your time! In addition to our regular volunteer shifts, ONT will have additional shifts during the weeks of Nov. 19 – 23 and Dec. 17 – 21 to help with holiday grocery distribution. We will need extra hands to ensure a smooth process for our guests. If you have not volunteered before, please complete a volunteer application and attend orientation before volunteering in our programs.
- Hosting a holiday party or family gathering? Make it impactful during the season of giving by asking your guests to bring a donation to ONT to help a family this holiday season. Whether it be a financial donation, gift cards or non-perishable food items, your guests can brighten the holiday season for their neighbors. If you are planning to collect food donations or host a food drive, please reach out to Melanie for more information.
- Don’t know what to give the person who has everything? Looking for the perfect hostess gift? Consider a donation to ONT in their honor! We will send the person a letter notifying them of your gift (if you provide their name and address). And if you donate online, your email donation receipt includes a card at the bottom that you can print and give to the recipient. Corporate groups have also made a donation to ONT in honor of their partners or employees for the holidays. What better holiday gift than the gift of food security!
- Join the Breakfast Club and make giving a priority year round! You can set up a monthly (or quarterly or weekly) donation on your credit card or through your bank. Breakfast Club members give regularly so every person can begin their day with wholesome and nutritious food throughout the year.
- Interested in volunteering as a group? ONT has sponsor and serve opportunities at the Wednesday Meal and in the Market. Groups of up to 8 come together to either serve the 3 course Wednesday Meal or assist guests with their weekly shopping in the Market. There are a few 2019 dates available in the Market, but the Wednesday Meal is booked through 2019 so make it part of your new year’s resolution and schedule your 2020 date.
The holidays are a time of cheer and gratitude as folks enjoy spending time with loved ones and celebrating the joys of the season. What better way to say "thank you" for your life’s blessings than to pay it forward? Read on to find out ways to give back this holiday season with ONT.
This year's Annual Breakfast drew 300 community members, our largest crowd to date! It was an inspiring and energizing morning for all in attendance as we saw the power of neighbors helping neighbors, and how support yesterday and today can create a brighter future. The actions of volunteers, donors and community partners are "Feeding the Future" and changing lives for years to come.
We were honored to have Joshua Frappier and Jill Weiss Hrubes share their personal experiences with ONT with the audience. Josh came to ONT with his family as a kid, and then came to depend on the Wednesday Meal when he was living on his own as teenager. Jill started volunteering with ONT in the early years, but after a divorce found herself needing ONT’s services to feed her 3 boys as a single mom. It was powerful to hear how the nourishing food and kindness Jill and Josh received from ONT during a tough time in their lives propelled them forward. Jill put herself through school and her boys are now in college or have graduated from college. Josh is now the CEO of the Frappier Group and served 2 tours with the Marines overseas. The support from ONT fed their futures and changed their lives.
Dr. Lars Lundgren, CEO of Children’s Health Care, also participated on our panel to share ONT’s new partnership with the practice to screen for food insecurity in children. In an especially moving moment of the morning, Jill explained how she would have been hesitant to share the family’s struggles with food insecurity with her kids’ pediatrician for fear of losing her children. Children’s Health Care is committed to connecting their patients and their families with the necessary resources, including food. Thanks to Dr. Lundgren and his team for turning this model of care on its head.
Another highlight of the morning was honoring our 2019 Community Champions. Jonathan Burke was honored as our Individual Champion for advocating for our mission and setting an honorable example for our future community leaders. Jonathan started volunteering with ONT’s Wednesday Meal for high school community service when he was 15. Now 24, Jonathan has rarely missed a Wednesday helping in the kitchen. US Foods was honored as our Corporate Champion for their in-kind support of ONT as a food rescue partner. US Foods has donated almost 1 million pounds of food in the last 2 years, quality food that enhances our Market and Meal programs. It would have been easier to throw that surplus food in the dumpster, but US Foods is committed to donating it back to the community and onto the tables of our neighbors.
Special thanks to Dana Marshall of 92.5 the River for serving as our emcee and panel host. Thank you to all who attended, sponsored and donated to feed the future. After the Breakfast, a first-time attendee captured it perfectly. "When you engage a community using authenticity and an undeniably deep,human connection, you create powerful opportunities to change lives in the most extraordinary ways...this morning was a clear validation that the ONT mission is being carried out one person at a time."
Throughout the month of April, local restaurants are teaming up to Fill Your Neighbor’s Plate, a campaign designed to support Our Neighbors’ Table’s mission to provide nourishing food to the thousands of local residents in need. The campaign will be featured in a growing list of restaurants including: Agave, The Grog, Lexie’s, Metzy’s Cantina, Michael’s Harborside, Mr. India, the Port Tavern, Paddle Inn and The Poynt (Newburyport); Crave, The Coop Rotisserie, Trina’s Starlite, and Phat Cats Bistro (Amesbury); and Capri and Seaglass (Salisbury).
Diners are invited to add a “virtual meal” - tax-deductible donation to ONT - to their restaurant bill. Suggested donation amounts are: $10, enough to provide a week’s worth of fresh produce, meats and dairy to a guest shopping in Our Neighbors’ Table’s markets; or $25 to support a family of four dining at ONT’s Wednesday Meal for an entire month. Every $1 puts another meal on the table for a local individual or family in need.
“This campaign is so important to help raise awareness of hunger in our community. With more than 6,000 people struggling to keep food on their tables each day, every bit that people can pitch in makes a real difference,” said Lyndsey Haight, Executive Director of Our Neighbors’ Table. “We are thankful to our restaurant partners for helping to spread our mission to their guests and to all of the diners who donate a virtual meal to feed a neighbor.”
Hunger affects 1 out of every 16 people living in northeastern Essex County. That means there are 6,000 neighbors with empty plates on their tables. Even more staggering, 1 out of every 5 of our seniors and 1 out of every 8 children in our region are struggling through each day without enough food. Our Neighbors’ Table has eliminated the traditional approach of strict schedules, cumbersome qualification and limited food selection by offering people-centric experiences and access to fresh, wholesome food when and where people throughout northeastern Essex County need it. Our grocery programs provide food assistance to individuals and families living in Amesbury, Boxford, Byfield, Georgetown, Groveland, Merrimac, Newbury, Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury, South Hampton (NH), and West Newbury. Visit ourneighborstable.org for more information.
Thank you to our 2019 restaurant partners!
2017: 1 Million Meals, More than 3,400 Neighbors Served!
What a year! And it didn't just happen by chance. More than 600 volunteers dedicated more than 28,000 hours of service and thousands of you contributed more than $840,000 in funds and $558,000 in food and toiletries to ensure our doors opened every day and our neighbors were welcomed and served all year long.
Thank you to every single one of YOU! We have high hopes for the year ahead and the potential to serve even more neighbors in 2018. Watch for our official 2017 annual report that will publish in early March. In the meantime, stay involved, come visit us, and help us spread the word about food insecurity in our community. Lyndsey Haight
You've made a real difference for these neighbors...
Adults are required to complete a volunteer orientation prior to registering for a volunteer shift. Complete your volunteer application and get started today!
How Can You Get Involved in 2018?
Every week, we register new neighbors and families who come to us for help. We expect to serve more than 3,500 people this year. But we can't do it without YOU.
One year ago, the Jardis-Taylor Center for Our Neighbors' Table opened its doors. The creation of this groundbreaking facility was the result of years of visioning and a steadfast commitment from an entire community to create a place for everyone. It was in those efforts, in the rallying of volunteers, donors, community leaders, that the Spoon Platoon was born. Today, the pioneers of the Spoon Platoon adorn the walls of ONT in a living wall sculpture that will continue to grow as more and more community members step forward to help us spread food security across the region.
The wood and aluminum sculpture was created through a collaboration between local artists Ryan Kelley (Wire by Ryan) and Stephen Martin.
"As donations for the capital campaign started to come in, we were inspired by the support and wanted to share that inspiration. We launched the 'Spoon Platoon' as a way to symbolize our desire to march hunger out of our community," explains Lyndsey Haight, Executive Director. To join the Spoon Platoon donors gave a commitment of $1,000 or more. "It became really fun when groups would come together to make the donations on behalf of their families and neighborhoods or in memory of lost loved ones; it was exactly the kind of community engagement we were hoping for," Haight recalls.
The debut of the Spoon Platoon Sculpture featured 171 spoons engraved with individuals, businesses, families, and even neighborhoods who contributed to ONT's Capital Campaign and supported its programs while the new facility was being constructed. The installation was unveiled at a reception on June 13th at The Jardis-Taylor Center.
In addition to the tribute to the many donors who joined the ranks of the Spoon Platoon, the reception also included recognition of the leadership donors who helped drive the success of the $1.1 million Campaign to Create a Place for Everyone. "The vision for a new home for our programs began 7 years ago among our small Board of Directors. That was the first charge they gave me upon joining ONT," remembers Haight. "We never imagined the need would have grown as much as it has, but that has never deterred us. We dreamed this was possible and stayed committed to that vision. None of it would be possible without our entire community, without Greg, without those strong leaders who believe in investing in the food security of our neighbors."
Our Neighbors' Table extends a heartfelt thanks to Greg Jardis, Institution for Savings, J Charitable Endeavors, Amesbury Health Care Charitable Trust, The Edward S. & Winifred G. Moseley Foundation, The McDonagh Family Foundation, The Capolupo Family, Newburyport Five Cents Savings Bank, The Peter & Margaret Kiely Charitable Fund, Murray Bailey, Frank Childs & Sally Delaney, J. Bennett & Company, and W.C. Cammett Engineering and to all those who gave so generously to build The Jardis-Taylor Center and the mission of Our Neighbors' Table.
YOU can join the SPOON PLATOON today! Read more...
On June 28th, more than 50 runners turned out to climb Po' Hill and raise food and money for Our Neighbors' Table. It was the very first Rock CAN Run Road Race, organized by one of Our Neighbors’ Table’s youngest volunteers – Andre Bailin. Andre is 9 years old, and in the 3rd grade at Amesbury Elementary School. He has been involved with road races his whole life, and, this year, put his experience to good use with his first event to benefit Our Neighbors’ Table.
The Rock CAN Run Road Race was a one mile run up Pow Wow Hill starting at the Nicholas Costello Transportation Center. Despite the hot temperatures, dozens of enthusiastic runners lined the starting line and ran to the top - nearly all of them carrying heavy bags of canned goods for ONT's pantry. The run is difficult climb, but for most it's over in less than 30 minutes. For the thousands of people facing hunger in our region, hunger is an uphill climb every day. The Rock CAN Run collected more than 12 crates of food and $800 to help ONT make that climb a little easier for our neighbors.
At the end of the run, participants enjoyed Turkey Hill ice cream provided by 104.1FM and a beautiful view to the Atlantic from Batchelder Park. Andre and his family even hosted runners back at his house for live music and refreshments! Way to go Andre! You are an inspiration for generations to come!