As summer wraps up and fall kicks off, lots of opportunities to give back to the community are here. The community is back from the beach and ready to support those right in their backyard. From backpack drives to 5Ks and plenty of opportunities to dance at upcoming galas, there is something for everyone. Check out how to get involved this fall season in Essex County, New Jersey.
Church of the Holy Spirit, Verona | 36 Gould Street, Verona
Every fourth Saturday of the month, the Church of the Holy Spirit opens its food pantry to the public. Starting at 9AM, guests can get items such as tuna, rice, pasta, laundry detergent, and more. For those interested in volunteering, set up begins the Friday night before from 5PM-6PM. Volunteers are needed to finish setting up on Saturday morning, greet guests, and clean up. Learn more here.
NCJW Mitzvah-in-a-Minute Diaper Drive | 70 South Avenue, Livingston
Diapers for babies can cost upwards of $80 per month. At this rate, one in New Jersey families cannot afford diapers for their baby. This number goes higher when factoring in families who need to supply adult diapers. The National Council of Jewish Women Essex County is working to combat these numbers with its Mitzvah-in-a-Minute Diaper Drive. Items can be given to NCJW directly or through the Amazon Wish List. Learn more here.
Town Wide Food Drive, Toni’s Kitchen | 73 South Fullerton Avenue, Montclair
Toni’s Kitchen is gearing up for its regular Town Wide Food Drive, an opportunity for the community to help those in need with shelf-stable food. Those who want to be involved can sign up to leave food on their porch or in front of their home to be picked up. Common items needed include rice, tuna, peanut butter, and soup. Learn more here.
Arts and Eats for Justice Gala | 540 Mill Street, Bellevue
Volunteer Lawyers for Justice are gathering to celebrate supporters with a gala. VLJ will honor volunteers and community members who help to get justice for those experiencing poverty in the area. The gala will benefit this deserving organization. The night kicks off at 5PM. Learn more here.
Night Out with NCJW | 343 Millburn Avenue, Millburn
The National Council of Jewish Women is gathering those who want to support its mission with a Night Out. The evening will consist of food, fun, and art from J. Nunez Gallery. The art sold will provide a portion of the proceeds to NCJW. Learn more here.
The Art of Giving | 46 Park Street, Montclair
Family Promise of Essex is celebrating its 35th Anniversary with a great night of giving. Join in a beautiful evening of drinks and dining along with live music and both a silent and live auction. The event will kick off at 7PM with all proceeds benefiting families experiencing homelessness in Essex County. Tickets are $200 per person. Learn more here.
MEND Green Bean Gala | 60 Woodland Park, Maplewood
MEND has a mission to strengthen the community through access to fresh and healthy food. To support this mission, the Green Bean Gala will raise funds and help provide those in need hunger relief. Opportunities to buy tickets or donate to the auction are now live. Learn more here.
St. Jude 5K Walk | 560 Northfield Avenue, West Orange
Help continue the fight against childhood cancer with St. Jude. Walk to help raise funds so families do not have to worry about medical bills for their children. Opportunities to start a team or volunteer on the day of the walk are available. Learn more here.
Isaiah House Gala | 305 North Ridgewood Road, South Orange
Isaiah House is celebrating 35 years of offering hunger and other resources to those in need in the community. The theme of the night is the roaring 1920s. Guests are asked to come dressed in theme to the event where they will be treated to a night of hors d’ oeuvres, dinner, and open bar. Further sponsorship of the event is available as well with the purchase of a ticket. Learn more here.
PAWS Holiday Bazaar + Tricky Tray | 26 Northview Avenue, Montclair
PAWS Montclair is a non-profit organization helping to save at-risk dogs and cats in urgent situations. Join in the fun of a holiday bazaar and tricky tray-filled local items. All proceeds will benefit PAWS Montclair. The fun will start at 1:30PM with ticket drawings starting at 3:30PM. Admission is free with a suggested donation of $5. Learn more here.
Ongoing Volunteer Opportunities
ANSWERS Moving Forward Inc. | 712 Springfield Avenue, Newark
ANSWERS Moving Forward (AMF) is a non-profit organization created to support men in need of temporary shelter. The organization works toward re-entry to society while providing a clean, safe environment. AMF is always in need of donations to support its guests. Items most needed include clothing and toiletries. To organize a donation drop-off or to learn more, email A.MovingForward@ymail.com.
Bethany Baptist Church Food Pantry | 275 West Market Street, Newark/58 Hartford Street, Newark
Every Tuesday and Thursday from 11AM-1PM the Bethany Baptist Church Food Pantry is open to the community. Volunteers are needed to support. Learn more here.
Blessed Sacrament Pantry | 19 Van Ness Place, Newark
For over 28 years, pantry manager Helen Brooks has been committed to helping students in her classroom beat hunger one bowl of cereal at a time. Today, the pantry is able to provide even more resources than just food such as toiletries, diapers, and clothes. Volunteers are needed to work alongside Ms. Brooks to ensure the community in need receives the donated items. Learn more here.
Broadway House for Continuing Care | 298 Broadway, Newark
Broadway House offers comprehensive support for those with acute illness or injury. Its program for those living with HIV/AIDS has been nationally recognized. Volunteers are needed to help guests of Broadway House socialize by playing games, mentoring, and just spending quality time. An application is needed to be a volunteer. Learn more here.
Calvary Baptist Church Food Pantry | 66 South Grove Street, East Orange
The Calvary Baptist Church has partnered with the Community Food Bank of New Jersey to service the East Orange area. On Tuesdays and Saturdays, hot meals and non-perishables are distributed to any who are in need. Volunteer opportunities are available during this time. Learn more here.
Church of the Eternal God | 190 Highland Avenue, Newark
On the second Saturday of every month, the Church of the Eternal God hosts its food pantry. The community can come for food. Delivery of food is available upon request. Volunteers are needed for food distribution and delivery. Learn more here.
Covenant House | 330 Washington Street, Newark
The Covenant House supports at-risk youth from homelessness and human trafficking. Volunteers are needed to spend time with the youth. Most volunteer positions are in two-hour shifts with a three-month commitment of coming weekly or bi-weekly. The most immediate volunteer needs are listed on the organization’s site. Learn more here.
First Hopewell Baptist Church Food Pantry | 525 Orange Street, Newark
In partnership with over 20 other food pantries, the First Hopewell Baptist Church hosts a food pantry for those in need. Volunteers are welcome to support the effort or even host their own food drives to collect items in need. Learn more here.
First Seventh Day Adventist Church | 15 Elmwood Avenue, Montclair
On the second and last Sunday of every month, the First Seventh Day Adventist Church food pantry is open to the public. From 12PM to 5PM guests can come to receive food if in need. Learn more here.
Franciscan Charities–St. Ann’s | 212 Hunterdon Street, Newark
Every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 11AM-2PM, meals and snack bags are distributed to the community. Volunteers are needed to help pack and distribute the bags. Franciscan Charities is known as a staple in the community and often allows for relationship-building between the volunteers and the clients. Learn more here.
Hombres y Mujers De Valor Par | 347 6th Avenue, Newark
Every Saturday from 12PM-3PM Hombres y Mujeres De Valor Par hosts its food pantry. Volunteers are needed to support. Learn more here.
House of Love Kitchen/Pantry | 589-595 Central Avenue, Newark
The House of Love Kitchen/Pantry is run mostly by the support of volunteers. Those in the community who have spent time giving back to House of Love in various ways share the blessings they have felt while serving. The kitchen is open on Tuesdays from 5PM-8PM and the food pantry is open every fourth Tuesday. Learn more here.
Human Needs Food Pantry | 9 Label Street, Montclair
The Human Needs Food Pantry is always in need of volunteers to serve the community. Volunteers are needed to pack fruits and vegetables, pick up food from suppliers, sort donated items, and deliver food to homebound clients. Those interested in volunteering should fill out the interest form here. In addition to volunteering, individuals can host a drive for needed items. For more information on how to start a drive, click here.
Inner City Emerg (Joi’s Angels) | 114 South Arlington Avenue, East Orange
Youth, food, housing, and life essentials are the core offerings of Joi’s Angels. The organization provides various resources for the community of all ages and is always looking for support. They are currently looking for public-minded volunteers who “aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty”. Learn more here.
Interfaith Food Pantry of the Oranges | 105 Main Street, Orange
The Interfaith Food Pantry of the Oranges provides resources such as food, clothing, period supplies, diapers, toiletries, clothes, and more to those in emergency need. Volunteers are asked to sign a COVID-19 waiver which can be found on the organization’s site before volunteering. Learn more here.
Isaiah House | 238 North Munn Avenue, East Orange
Isaiah House has been providing resources to the community at large such as food distribution, HIV/AIDS program, shelter, community development, and more. Donations of food, cleaning supplies, technology, and trash bags are always welcome. Volunteer opportunities are available. Learn more here.
Little Zion U.A.M.E. Church Food Pantry | 154 Stephens Street, Belleville
Every third and fourth Saturday of the month volunteers are needed at 10AM to help with food distribution to the community. Those in need are welcome to come to receive perishable and non-perishable food items. Donations of food are also welcome. Learn more here.
Love of Jesus Ministries Food Pantry | 448 Highland Avenue, Orange
Volunteers are always needed and greatly appreciated at the Love of Jesus Ministries Food Pantry. The pantry is taking donations and help is needed to distribute and organize food. Learn more here.
Nutley Family Service Bureau | 169 Chestnut Street, Nutley
Nutley Family Service offers resources to those in need to help enhance family life. Services such as grocery delivery for seniors, nutrition education, clothing resources, and more. Volunteers are needed to help this organization run. Volunteer orientations are held every second Monday and third Tuesday. Learn more here.
Roseville Presbyterian Church Food Pantry | 36 Roseville Avenue, Newark
Every second Monday of the month the Roseville Presbyterian Church Food Pantry distributes groceries. All patrons are welcome. Donations and help for the pantry are accepted. Learn more here.
Salem Seventh Day Adventist | 10 South Oraton Parkway, East Orange
Every second and fourth Thursday of the month the Salem Seventh Day Adventist hosts its food pantry. Guests can come from 9AM-12PM for food. Learn more here.
Salvation Army | 430 Main Street, East Orange
The Salvation Army has no shortage of volunteer opportunities. In Essex County specifically, opportunities to field calls for the organization, fill out local food vendor forms, create client referral packages, and more. The opportunity allows for a chance to meet others as volunteers work in tandem with one to two others at the same time. Learn more here.
Toni’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Church | 73 South Fullerton Avenue, Montclair
Food prep, serving, bagging, driving, food delivery, and pickups are needed at Toni’s Kitchen at St. Luke’s Church. Walk-in volunteers are not welcome, please pre-register online before volunteering. Learn more here.
Toussaint Food Pantry | 528 Martin Luther King Boulevard, Newark
For the past 23 years, the Toussaint Food Pantry has been serving the community of Newark. Today, their services reach over 300 families totaling over 700 people monthly. The pantry is open every Saturday from 9AM-11AM. Volunteers are needed for the distribution and organization of food. Learn more here.
The Apostles House | 18-24 Grant Street, Newark
The Apostles House is dedicated to providing life resources to women, children, and at-risk families in Essex County. Its mission is to end homelessness while encouraging self-sufficiency and a great quality of life. Volunteers are welcome to help with many of the services at the shelter such as food and clothing distribution, reading to the guests, teaching life skills workshops, and more. Learn more here.
United Community Corporation | 933 South 17th Street, Newark
The mission of United Community Corporation is to service low-income, disadvantaged, and/or at-risk individuals in the community. This organization works with AmeriCorps VISTA to staff its volunteers. Information on becoming a VISTA can be found on their site. Learn more here.
Zion United Church Food Pantry | 17 Alexander Street, Newark
The Zion United Church has a food pantry and soup kitchen in operation. Every Friday at 5PM those in need in the community can come to receive food. The pantry asks that guests call ahead if they are in need. Learn more here.