LUMBERTON – Assemblyman Ryan Peters, Assemblywoman Jean Stanfield and their legislative staff picked and packed over 500 pounds of produce from two Southampton farms, Gower Nurseries and Rancocas Creek Farm, yesterday.
The Food Bank of South Jersey linked the two legislators to a food pantry in need, and more than 500 pounds of produce was delivered to Calvary Baptist Church in Beverly, NJ.
“To know that this food might have otherwise gone to waste and instead went to feed families who are struggling with food insecurity is a happy ending. This District Day of Service was one of the most fulfilling events we have had to date,” Peters said. “We also couldn’t have done it without the generosity of Gower Nurseries and the Pineland Preservation Alliance’s Rancocas Creek Farms, which showed us around their farms and let us harvest their crops.”
The 8th Legislative District provided a wide assortment of produce including watermelons, potatoes, squash, tomatoes, okra, eggplant, peppers, and zucchini.
“Before the COVID pandemic began, Calvary Baptist Church fed about 50 families. Now we’re told they regularly feed at least 150 families. It’s a heartbreaking reality of the pandemic, but to know we are in a position to help put food on those families’ tables warms my heart,” Stanfield said.
At least once a month, Peters, Stanfield and their 8th District Office perform a “District Day of Service.” Since the coronavirus lockdowns started in March, the team has focused its efforts on food insecurity. They have partnered with local restaurants and held five free senior meal drives, giving out more than 1,000 free meals, hosted a “Fill the Food Bank,” that packed a food pantry and plan to do another free meal drive on August 26.
Please reach out to 8th Legislative District Community Event Coordinator Nikki Maskell at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to volunteer for any future “Day of Service” event.