Give Back this Holiday Season

Now through Nov. 12, look for Holiday Meal Donation Bags in ShopRite of Rio Grande at checkout. When you purchase a bag for just $10, all the trimmings for a Thanksgiving meal will be donated to local families in need, thanks to the help of ShopRite’s partners at the local food bank! For more information, call ShopRite of Rio Grande at (609) 399-3534.

The Coalition Against Rape & Abuse, Inc. (C.A.R.A) is holding two Holiday Drives for the season. Now through Nov. 18, C.A.R.A. is collecting turkeys to donate to families in need for Thanksgiving. Now through Dec. 16, C.A.R.A. is collecting brand new toys for any age, gift certificates and monetary donations for Christmas. On Dec. 14-16, the counseling center will be transformed into a shop for mothers who are victims or survivors to shop for free for their families, thanks to your donations. To donate, contact Nikki Nichols at (609) 522-6489. For more information on C.A.R.A., visit

Erma Fire Company will be holding a Food Drive this Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 19 and 20. The company will be collecting non-perishable food items, baby foods, pet foods and toiletries at the firehouse, 415 Breakwater Rd., from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. to help bolster the Lower Township Food Bank. Any item will be gladly accepted and appropriated to help our less-fortunate community neighbors through the upcoming Holidays and winter months.

Ocean City BSA Troop 32 is conducting a Clothing Drive on Sunday, Nov. 20 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Island Auto Repair, 713 Haven Ave., Ocean City. The drive accepts new or gently used clothes, shoes, linens, purses, hats and stuffed animals. Proceeds will be used to acquire troop tents and camping gear. For additional information, please contact Chris Leonetti by phone at (609) 399-5490 or visit the Ocean City Troop 32 website at

Jersey Shore Federal Credit Union is holding a Family Promise Necessities and Food Collection, collecting various necessities and food for the Family Promise of Cape May County. Family Promise has a range of programs to support ending family homelessness and they recognize the promise and inherent potential of all families. Be part of a special group that assists families with children who are experiencing homelessness and drop off your donations through Nov. 21. Pick up a list of needed items from the Northfield, Galloway, Rio Grande or FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center (on-site employees only) credit union branches. For more information, call (609) 382-4356 or visit

In light of the holiday season, Dr. Panico and his staff need your help to give back to those in need. Dr. Panico’s First Annual Food Drive is looking for donations of canned soup, canned veggies, peanut butter, jam, dried pasta, canned fruit, cereal and non-perishables. Visit the New Jersey Food Bank website for the full list of appropriate donations. Stop by the office, 4 Oslo Ave., Rio Grande, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., or Thursday 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., to drop off your donations. For more information, call (609) 886-2277 or visit

On the day before Thanksgiving, Wednesday, Nov. 23, the Avalon Lions Club Lions will hold a White Cane Collection for Homeless Veterans outside of Joe Canal’s Discount Liquor Outlet on Route 47 in Rio Grande. Donations collected will go to two local charities working to help veterans in South Jersey: The Branches in Rio Grande and the Citizens/Veterans Advisory Committee.

The Avalon Lions, Avalon Free Public Library, Holy Redeemer Food Pantry and Avalon Acme Market are partnering with the local community and holding a Holiday Community Food Drive to help feed the needy during the holiday season. The food drive runs through Nov. 24 with all donations going to the Holy Redeemer Food Bank. For more information, call Tony Adamoli at (609) 368-2197 or Jim Collins at (215) 704-2123.

Miracles Fitness in Rio Grande is a hosting “Burn the Bird & Sweat the Gravy” on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 24. Proceeds from the workout will go to childhood cancer awareness and research. Cost is a $20 donation. Choose either a Zumba Dance Party or Fitness Boot Camp from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., then finish with a relaxing yoga stretch session from 9:30 to 10 a.m. Everyone is welcome. For more information, call (609) 886-7070.

Atlantic Cape Community College will join #GivingTuesday with a goal of raising $50,000 for scholarships by Tuesday, Nov. 29. This also celebrates Atlantic Cape’s 50th anniversary this year of creating educational opportunities for Atlantic and Cape May County residents. #GivingOpporTuesday, a play on the college’s tag line, “opportunity starts here,” will be used on social media leading up to and on Nov. 29 to encourage engagement from donors and participants in the college community. For more information or to donate, visit

Cradles to Crayons®, a nonprofit organization that provides children living in homeless or low-income situations with the essential items they need to thrive, is pleased to announce it is joining forces BHHS Fox & Roach/Trident for the Gear Up For Winter initiative. Now through Dec. 1, BHHS Fox & Roach/Trident offices, including the Sea Isle City, Stone Harbor and Avalon offices, will be collecting new and gently used winter items to help keep children safe and warm in the year’s harshest season. Items to be collected include children’s winter clothes (sizes infant-14/16, adult smalls), winter coats (sizes infant-14/16, adult smalls), new socks and underwear, shoes and winter boots (sizes infant-adult 9.5), and hats and gloves.

The Ocean City Board of Realtors is holding a Winter Clothes Drive now through Friday, Dec. 9, collecting coats, sweaters, blankets, snow boots, hats, scarves and more. The winter drive will gather new or gently used items to be donated to the Ecumenical Clothes Closet. Funds will be accepted to purchase items. Donations may be dropped off at the Board of Realtors Office, 405 22nd St., Ocean City, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For pick up please call the office at (609) 399-0128 or email Vicki Heebner at

Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery is hosting the Giving Vine Campaign and donating 10 Christmas trees with lights to families who can’t afford the cost of a live tree. With the help of volunteers from Cape Assist, the trees along with wrapped toys and children’s outerwear will be headed to local families in need. Hawk Haven customers can get involved by bringing a new unwrapped toy or new children’s outerwear, such as coats, gloves and hats, to the tasting room until Dec. 10. For more information, call (609) 886-7347 or visit

On Saturday, Dec. 10, Post Offices in Cape May, Cape May Court House, Villas, Rio Grande, Wildwood, Stone Harbor, Avalon, Sea Isle, Ocean View, Ocean City, Marmora and Woodbine will participate in the Annual Postal Food Drive. Local letter carriers will collect nonperishable foods to help fill up our local food banks. Please leave any non-perishable foods by your mailbox and your mail carrier will pick it up, or drop off any food at your local Post Office. Donations can include cereals, instant potatoes, tuna, pasta, mayonnaise, mac and cheese, spaghetti sauce, peanut butter and jelly, canned fruit and vegetables, baby food and formula, beans, juices, soups, applesauce and rice.

Join the Boy Scouts Troop 79 of Seaville for a Blood Drive on Sunday, Dec. 18 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Seaville Fire Department, 36 Rt. 50, Ocean View. Visit and type in Ocean View’s zip code, 08230, into the “Find a Blood Drive” box to make an appointment online. The sponsor code is “Boy Scouts Troop 79.” Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are preferred.

The Rio Grande branch of the Jersey Shore Federal Credit Union is collecting gifts for its Starfish Angel Tree to benefit a family of four from the Family Promise of Cape May County. To participate in the Holiday Gift Drive, visit 3317 Rt. 9 S., Rio Grande and select a starfish tag from the tree in the lobby. Return your unwrapped gift (appropriate for ages two or four) to the lobby with the tag attached and place it under the tree by Monday, Dec. 19. For more information, call (609) 382-4356 or visit

Mayor Len Desiderio’s 24th Annual Holiday Toy and Food Drive is currently underway. Donations of unwrapped toys, non-perishable food items and gift cards are now being accepted at several locations around Sea Isle City, including City Hall (233 JFK Blvd.), City Burger Restaurant (4201 Landis Ave.), First Bank of Sea Isle City (4301 Landis Ave.), Kix-McNutley’s (63rd St. & Landis Ave.), Mrs. Brizzle’s Buns & Deli (4601 Landis Ave.), Rick’s Breakfast House (6114 Landis Ave.) and the Sea Isle City Welcome Center (300 JFK Blvd.). All items collected during the Toy & Food Drive will be delivered to local families in need prior to Christmas Day.