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2013 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Center for Food Action in New Jersey

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Emergency Assistance, Homeless & Housing, Housing Expense Reduction Support, Human Services

Mission: The Center for Food Action provides emergency food, housing, heating, and utility assistance to low-income people in northern New Jersey. CFA''s staff and volunteers  work with clients to improve their lives through a wide range of direct services including the provision of food, rental payments, security deposits, heating oil, utility payments, advocacy, counseling and referrals to other agencies. Support comes from all segments of the community. We receive food and funds from religious and civic groups, schools, corporate sponsors and individuals.

Results: Hunger takes a physical toll and has a devastating emotional impact on many in the community. This year the CFA will have distributed nearly 50,000 food packages -almost $3 million worth of food - and prevented several hundred families from losing their homes and helped hundreds of households stay warm this winter.

Target demographics: Most of CFA's clients are working people who have hit upon hard times due to an illness, a low paying job, or temporary unemployment. Nearly half of CFA's clients are children and 13% are seniors.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Your support will make a huge difference in the lives of over 16,000 northern New Jersey families.

Programs: The Center for Food Action provides seven-day emergency food packages, supplemental food packages and holiday food packages. CFA also provides nutrition and budgeting workshops for clients and offers a hunger education program for students, scouts, and members of our community. We encourage food donations and visits from Scout troops and school groups and provide a variety of opportunities for community service and service learning.The Statewide Emergency Food and Anti-Hunger Network (SEFAN), established in 1980, provides 900 food pantries and soup kitchens throughout New Jersey with education and assistance. The SEFAN quarterly newsletter provides information on hunger.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters



Rating: 2

I volunteered to pack meals for the CFA. The mission of this organization is top notch and they help many many people in NJ. However, staff of the organization have yet to understand the potential value of a volunteer. One bad volunteer experience is a loss of a potential donor for an organization. I had a bad experience with executive staff during my first volunteering and it turned me (and my future donor dollars) off entirely. I was not alone in my assessment, I got the same feedback on the volunteering experience from several people that day. Rude, dismissive, unfriendly. Opportunity lost for the CFA.


Rating: 5

This is a fantastic organization run by a hard working and caring group. I really enjoy helping give back through this program. They help a very large amount of people and their contribution is immeasurable.


Rating: 5

I've volunteered at the Mahwah site of CFA. I'm the President of Waldwick's Club for Women. Our group has volunteered there twice and actually going again on Saturday. The work they do for the community is awesome. They really take what they do seriously. When we're there we sort, check expiration dates and just really take pride in giving back. So many people depend on this place. You would probably be surprised to find out you may know somebody who needs this service. Keep up the good work CFA and our friend Jim who runs the Mahwah site. We will continue to volunteer and bring donations as long as you need us!


Rating: 5

I have known about and supported CFA since it began in Englewood. At the time I was administrator at St. Paul's Episcopal Church and had the occasion, very frequently, to see how CFA supported hard working families who, for no fault of their own, were unable to make it from one paycheck to another, how it provided food for children during times when the school lunches were suspended, etc. Since the early days it has expanded and continued to do a wonderful work for the community. Katharine Le Mee


Rating: 5

I have volunteered at the Center all my life and have only the greatest respect for this charity. Their events are well planed and I especially enjoyed helping out at Christmas which is always well run. The Gala is an event I look forward to all year and am always happy with the party. The Center has found a way to remain relevent in a declining donating world and the work they do is remarkable.


Rating: 5

Our church, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, in New Milford has been donating food to the Center for Food Acton for several years. When I delivered our food donations. I was always impressed with the caring demonstrated by the staff that works and volunteers there. When I received an email requesting the need for volunteers in the office, I was eager to respond. I have been volunteering in the office since August and continue to be impressed by the compassion and competence demonstrated by the staff dealing with some very difficult situations and stressful times. I am truly pleased and proud to be working with such compassionate people, both staff and volunteers.