• Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Linkedin

Thank you to all of our food providers, volunteers, and donors over the past 33 years. We’d like to share the email below, sent by Board President Paul Shackford to our volunteer Team Leaders on March 1st, the actual anniversary of this amazing program.

Dear TLs.

I want to let you know that 33 years ago today, March 1, 1991, Family Promise (then the IRF) served the first meals as part of the WID Program.  These were served at CAP (Community Action Program) headquarters in Hackensack to adults needing a meal.  All were served in a room — no “dock” back then — and we probably served 40 – 50 meals a night.

We then moved several times to different locations in Hackensack until the County opened the shelter building where we are now located.

So, today, we began our 34th year of meeting the needs of those who are hungry and who live at or come to the shelter to get meals.  Having started small, we have grown:

  • The early days — 18,000 meals per year
  • Pre-Covid — 35,000 meals a year
  • 2022 — 53,000 meals
  • 2023 — 70,000 meals
  • 2024 — on track to reach 80,000 meals this year


  • The early days — perhaps 8,000 volunteer hours per year
  • Now — Closer to 20,000 volunteer hours per year

During these 33 years, we have served about 1.4 million meals.

Family Promise, as an organization (particularly Kate, Margo, and I) are very proud to be part of this.

We hope YOU — part of the Family Promise FAMILY — are as proud as we are.  It’s because of all of the volunteers that we are able to do this — making the meals and serving them.  But we depend every single night on you Team Leaders who make it all happen.

So please, take a moment to think about that.  About what you do together with the hundreds of volunteers.  You are part of, and LEAD, a BIG THING.  You should be very, very proud of what you do.

I know we all wish that the issue of poverty and hunger would end.  Many of us pray for that every day.  However, until those prayers are answered, let’s pray that we continue to have the financial and volunteer support that enables us to begin our 34th year of serving those in need.

I also hope you tell your friends and families and others about this program, and how it impacts you on a deep, personal level.

Best regards,

Paul, Kate, and Margo, and the rest of Family Promise.