Local celebrity supports message of hope at Project 250

| 15 Feb 2012 | 09:41

NEWTON — Author and entertainment reporter Jancee Dunn will be the featured guest at the annual Project 250 celebration on behalf of Project Self-Sufficiency on Thursday, Oct. 20. This year’s event, which will be held at a private home in Sussex County, will kick off the agency’s year-long celebration of its 25th anniversary serving low-income families in northwestern New Jersey. Several former participants will also be on hand to highlight the impact the agency’s programs have had on their own lives. Project Self-Sufficiency is a non-profit agency which helps families to attain economic self-sufficiency and family stability. Project 250 will be catered by North Jersey Bar & Grill. A key part of this year’s festivities will be the lighting of hundreds of Chinese lanterns, each symbolizing the hope for continued success on behalf of the thousands of families served by Project Self-Sufficiency over the past 25 years. Beverly Gordon, President of Project Self-Sufficiency’s Board of Directors, said, “Project 250 is one of my favorite events because it combines inspirational stories from past participants with hope for the families who will be crossing over our threshold in the future. “We are beholden to Kathy and Lou Esposito who offered us the use of their beautiful home for this event, and Jancee Dunn who took time out of her busy schedule to spend an evening with us. We are looking forward to a magical evening.” Jancee Dunn Jancee Dunn grew up in Chatham. She was a writer at Rolling Stone from 1989-2003, where she wrote 20 cover stories for the magazine. She has written for many different publications, among them the New York Times, Vogue, GQ, Jane, The New York Times, and O: The Oprah Magazine. From 2001-2002 she was an entertainment correspondent for Good Morning America. She also served as a veejay for MTV2 from 1996 until 2001. Her memoir “But Enough about Me,” about her life as a chronically nervous celebrity interviewer, came out in 2006. Her novel “Don’t You Forget about Me” was published in July 2008. “Why is my Mother Getting at Tatoo? And Other Questions I Wish I Never Had to Ask” was issued in 2009. Jancee lives with her husband and daughter in Brooklyn, N.Y. “I’m so happy to help celebrate 25 years of Project Self-Sufficiency’s important work in Sussex County. When I was asked to be a part of Project 250, I jumped on board,” noted Jancee Dunn. “My folks have volunteered there for many years, and I see firsthand the impact that this organization has on low-income families—nearly 20,000 of them since the organization started. “As keynote speaker, I’ll be dishing for our donors about my life as a celebrity interviewer —off the record, just for them. It’s the least I can do for people who lend their support to Project Self-Sufficiency. “ Who they are helping Patrons of Project 250 are invited to attend the event or to make a contribution towards Project Self-Sufficiency’s annual campaign, which focuses on the services offered to children by the agency. In addition to keynote speaker Jancee Dunn, the evening will feature a variety of guest speakers who have turned their lives around with the help of Project Self-Sufficiency. “As we celebrate our 25th anniversary serving low-income families from our area, we are grateful for the generosity demonstrated by the community towards our participants, who have struggled to find work and hold their families together during the recent economic downturn,” said Deborah Berry-Toon, Executive Director of Project Self-Sufficiency. “The funds raised by Project 250 go directly to the children of the families we serve, who tend to be the poorest of the poor in our area. We are excited to be celebrating the successes of the past 25 years, and we are confident that the community will continue to lend a helping hand to our neighbors in need.” Kathy Esposito, the hostess of this year’s Project 250, added, “My husband, Lou, and I are honored to be hosting Project 250 this year. Supporting Project Self-Sufficiency’s mission of service to low-income families is very important to us, and we are delighted to be able to help in any way that we can.”