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By JOHN T. WARD
At a hearing packed with supporters, and without a peep of objection, Red Bank’s zoning board gave unanimous approval Thursday night to a plan by St. Anthony of Padua parish to build a new social services facility on Herbert Street.
“They’ve obviously been very beneficial to the town,” said board member Sean Murphy, citing the church and its volunteers. “Unfortunately, the need is growing, but we’re very fortunate to have them.”
By JOHN T. WARD
The needs are evident in the long lines that form at St. Anthony of Padua in Red Bank: families short on cash for food, housing, clothing and other necessities.
Now served out of a multipurpose building on Herbert Street, where the food pantry and clothing distribution operations must be set up and taken down with regularity, the Roman Catholic parish hopes to erect a new dedicated social services building, and is scheduled to make its case to the borough zoning board Thursday night.
By STACIE FANELLI
The small serenity garden outside Lunch Break is a quiet place for locals to relax, unwind and sometimes even nap. But Roseanne Monroe knows about a few other gems it holds: basil, garlic, chives, figs and “oodles of tomatoes,” for starters.
In the middle of the Red Bank soup kitchen’s weekly adult cooking demonstration of gazpacho last Thursday, Monroe ran low on a few herbs in the recipe. So she just stepped outside to pick what she needed straight from the ground.
“It doesn’t get fresher than that,” she said. “To me, everything that comes out of the earth that we eat has a benefit.”
By DANIELLE TEPPER
The Red Bank Salvation Army is in “dire” need of immediate donations for its food pantry, according to the officer in charge of the Newman Springs Road facility.
“It came to my attention yesterday,” Major Elizabeth Rogan told redbankgreen Thursday. It looks like we’re not that empty, but we are, because there’s not a lot of the main staples that we need. I don’t want to be down to absolutely nothing.
A client signs in at the Project Loaves and Fishes food pantry at St. Anthony’s on a recent Tuesday night.
When Jeannette O’Bryant’s son and daughter-in-law lost their jobs recently, she ended up taking in some of their children and needing a hand herself to feed them.
“I didn’t know which way to turn,” says the Red Bank resident.
Eventually, she discovered the Project Loaves and Fishes food pantry run out of St. Anthony of Padua R.C. Chruch on Bridge Avenue. There, once a week, she now stocks up on groceries, but can also avail herself of everything from used clothing to a personal computer.
But just as valuable to her as the material help, O’Bryant says, is that the volunteers at the church treat their clients, all of whom must register for the program, with dignity. She tells of seeing a man once being asked to leave because he was disruptive, but not before the pantry workers were sure he had the food his family would need.
“We’re uptight, we’re frustrated, we’ve been tormented by the economy,” she tells redbankgreen while waiting in line on a recent Tuesday night. “They’re wonderful. They help you out with food and clothing, and they do it with personality and understanding.”