HADDONFIELD >> Cathedral Kitchen, the largest emergency food provider in Camden, has worked tirelessly to shift from on-site dining to take out and meal delivery in an effort to provide emergency food aid to those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The $15,000 grant from the SJ COVID-19 Response Fund, which is managed by Community Foundation of South Jersey (CFSJ), helped the Cathedral Kitchen team keep up with the rise in food insecurity in the area. The grant also went to providing personal protective equipment (PPE) and hiring additional staff such as chefs and sous chefs.

The grant supported the organization’s ability to manage unexpected extra food costs and their need to purchase take-out boxes, hand wipes, and bottled water for to-go meals. They also increased food delivery to other organizations and housing communities, and revamped programs such as dental care and job placement.

“Yearly, we give out 300 meals to roughly 5,000 people, but since the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen a large increase in need,” said Carrie Kitchen-Santiago, Executive Director of Cathedral Kitchen. “The grant from the Response Fund allowed us to serve the larger number of people in need of meals. We are very grateful for the help and are glad to keep serving those in our community.”

“We are so gratified that our Response Fund grant has helped Cathedral Kitchen feed those who are hungry in our South Jersey community,” said CFSJ Executive Director Andy Fraizer. “Thanks to contributions from businesses, foundations and local individuals, we’re able to help Cathedral Kitchen and other organizations transition programs and purchase PPE to stay safe during these trying times.”

The South Jersey COVID-19 Response Fund continues to respond to local nonprofits that need support to serve communities impacted by the pandemic. To date, the Fund has raised more than one million dollars while the requests from nonprofits is at least five times more. To support the only fund where donations stay in our South Jersey region, visit southjerseyresponsefund.org.

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