2022 Summer Food Pantry Program Launches at Staten Island Synagogue
Edited by: TJVNews.com
On June 28, 2022, the Staten Island Council of Jewish Organizations (COJO) at the Aur Torah Sephardic Minyan of Staten Island located in the New Springville section of Staten Island launched its 2022 Summer Pantry Program.
“From produce to groceries we at COJO are thankful that Rabbi Aharon Zeev, President Reuven Oshri together with the Synagogue’s wonderful congregants that COJO is able to support Staten Island with a summer food pantry. I cannot emphasize enough how grateful COJO is for the hard work and dedication of Iva Reuven our Service Committee Chairperson who together with her great team and their collaborative efforts with Terry Troia, President of Project Hospitality and Gloria Novoa, Director of Volunteers at Project Hospitality for making this summer pantry a reality, “ said Rabbi Mendy Mirocznik, the executive vice president of the Rabbinical Alliance of America and president of COJO .
“I also want to acknowledge our partnership and support from the NYPD, Captain Eric Waldhelm, Commanding Officer, PCT. 121; and his caring officers such as Officer Daniel Murro, Community Affairs Officer Scott Gusenfitter, Community Affairs Officer Sean Mondello and Community Affairs Officer John Sibal for all their help, from traffic control to helping with packing and distributing the food packages. I thank Ari Weiss, COJO Security Chairman and Coordinator Staten Island Shomrim for coordinating with Captain Waldhelm all the details needed in facilitating a smooth and picture-perfect event. This COJO, NYPD community partnership works to improve community relations, builds trust and confidence and the quality of life for the residents of Staten Island. The message is clear that COJO is here to help and thanks to Aur Torah, Project Hospitality and the NYPD it is working.”
Iva Reuven, remarked, “that the sharp increase in price for groceries and food products has effected our senior population and young families with children. When I mentioned the idea of having a Summer Pantry at Aur Torah, I was ecstatic beyond words how Rabbi Zeev and the Congregation embraced the idea and supported and encouraged this important project. I further thank, Food Bank, City Harvest and Met Council and in particular David G. Greenfield, CEO and Executive Director of Met Council, Aaron Cyperstein, Associate Council and Director of External Affairs of Met Council, Jessica Chait, Managing Director of Food Programs at Met Council, Benjamin Zaientz, Quality Specialist at Met Council and Rebecca Glass, Met Council Pantry Coordinator for providing us the much-needed foods and groceries.
We are working together with the goal of sending a clear message that we at COJO will do whatever we can to help as many Staten Islanders as humanly possible and alleviates their food insecurity as best as we can. I humbled to be part of this wonderful team of concerned community activists.”
Captain Eric Waldhelm commented, “we at the NYPD are delighted to work hand in hand with COJO, Rabbi Aharon Zeev, Mendy Mirocznik, Iva Reuven, Ari Weiss, Terry Troia and Gloria Novoa. Community relations and building bridges means working side by side and hand in hand with the community and being visible and present. These food distributions affords us from a policing perspective that opportunity. In turn we know that we have created good and effective friendships and open lines of communication and this achievement leads to a safer Staten Island. We are proud to be part of this wonderful pantry community.”
Rabbi Aharon Zeev, stated, “Iva Reuven is a true inspiration not just to me but to any person that is fortunate to meet her. We at Aur Torah are proud of the great work done by COJO and will always be a caring Synagogue and a happy partner working with COJO, Project Hospitality and the NYPD in alieving as best as we can food insecurity. Thank you Mendy Mirocznik for bringing to us this great Mitzva. We look forward to helping the community in any way we can.”