Volunteers honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr by assisting in food drive in Northeast Philly

- There are several ways people are pitching in to honor this year’s Martin Luther King Day of Service.

One effort is bringing hundreds of volunteers from all across the Delaware Valley, all dedicated to feeding those in need of food.

In North Philadelphia, an assembly line of humanity helping humanity with canned goods and other foods boxed up and shipped with speed that just might rival a NASCAR pit crew.

“It just makes you appreciate what you have and you want to try to give so that other people have more and get a leg up,” said volunteer Tia Piccolo.

Piccolo and her son, J.P. are among 1200 volunteers honoring the Martin Luther King Day of Service, by helping the Jewish Relief Agency arrange and deliver precious goods to scores of those less fortunate. But, there’s another reason she’s involved.

“I just kind of wanted to show our children to give back to the community and we figured this was a good step to do,” Piccolo explained.

“I think it’s fun and it feels good to give food to people,” said J.P. Piccolo.

Each box has about 14 pounds of key non-perishables for the average pantry and will serve Philly and the four surrounding counties with an increasing number of people struggling across the region.

“The folks we serve are living at or below 150 percent of the federal poverty level and more and more families, more and more seniors are coming to us and saying they can’t make ends meet,” said Peter Rabinowitz, the Executive Director of the Jewish Relief Agency.

“You knock on the door, you say Jewish Relief Agency delivery and people come out happy, smiling and appreciative,” said volunteer Lou Fromm. 

Fromm, of Ambler, has taken part in the relief effort for years and is set with his assignment.

“We get certain routes. This route is going to be going to Fox Chase. Actually, I think we are going to be taking a stroller and some other things as well, so it’s not only food,” Fromm explained.

Organizers say about 6000 people will be assisted with this round of donations alone.
 

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