Warwick Ecumenical Council distributes 255 Christmas food baskets

| 15 Feb 2012 | 10:50

Warwick — Volunteers for the Warwick Ecumenical Council collected and distributed 255 Christmas food baskets at the Warwick United Methodist Church last Thursday, Dec. 22. Although actually very well organized, the morning appeared chaotic as donors pulled up to a side entrance of the church. Hurried volunteers then used shopping baskets to rush the donations into the building where they were inventoried, stacked on shelves and repackaged for the afternoon delivery to needy families. Apples, donated by Pennings Food Market were also added to the mix. According to co-chairs Michele Carter and Marge Koopman, this community-wide effort, which brought volunteers together from the entire town, resulted in another record number of food baskets delivered. “Because of the poor economy, job losses and natural disasters,” said Koopman, “there was more need this year than usual. And we were amazed at the generosity of the people in Warwick. We thank everyone who donated food and all our volunteers for their service.” Many of the donations, especially toys, came from the Angel Tree, which had been set up on Main Street in the Village of Warwick during the celebration of Home for the Holidays. In addition, individuals and organizations had been invited to adopt a family and to provide baskets and gifts, donate cash, collect food and toys or volunteer on the distribution day. And in a program at the church, managed by Debbie Moran, needy families who came to pick up their Christmas food baskets, also had an opportunity to select a free toy or purchase a more expensive one for a token sum of one dollar. The Warwick Ecumenical Council urges residents and businesses to reach out and make a difference to a disadvantaged family or a lonely senior. The council’s food pantry is located at a facility inside the United Methodist Church, which is located on 17A and Forester Avenue. “In this current economy,” said Food Pantry co-coordinator Michelle Carter, “we are more in need than ever for donations of cash, food and clothing.”