Friends of the Poor, Family to Family Plan for Thanksgiving

Friends of the Poor is proud to once again announce three community-based programs to help those in need this Thanksgiving: The Thanksgiving Dinner for Adults and Elderly, the Family to Family Thanksgiving Food Basket Program, and the Interfaith Prayer Service.  In light of the current pandemic, each will be carried out in a different style than they have for the past four decades.

The Interfaith Prayer Service, used to kick-off our holiday programming by celebrating the gratitude, joy, and hope that are a part of every faith tradition, will be held virtually on Friday, November 20that 7PM.  Guests are invited to join in via Zoom by making reservations with the Scranton Area Ministerium.

The Thanksgiving Dinner for Adults and Elderly, initiated by the late Sister Adrian Barrett, IHM in 1976 with 24 guests in need of a meal and family to share it with, will be held on Tuesday, November 24th.  Dinners will be packed as take-outs and handed out to those in need outside of the Scranton Cultural Center, 420 N Washington Ave, Scranton, PA 18503, from 3PM to 6PM in a drive by event.  Volunteers will distribute the meals on the corner of N. Washington and Vine.  Each takeout will include the traditional turkey dinner we have served for so many years, as well as candy, a roll, and a card crafted by students from local schools and universities.  We will also be providing meals to those adults and elderly that were previously bussed to our dinner through a wonderful partnership with the Lackawanna County Area Agency on Aging and Meals on Wheels of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

The Family to Family Thanksgiving Food Basket Program, directed by the Robeson family, will continue in the same manner as our COVID-19 Emergency Food Distributions that have been held since March 18th.  On Wednesday, November 25that Scranton High School, 63 Mike Munchak Way, Scranton, PA 18508, from 10AM to 5:30PM, volunteers will place the groceries needed for a traditional Thanksgiving dinner in the car trunks for all those who need it.  For the past decade, we have served over 2,500 families from our Thanksgiving basket program alone.  Since March 18, we have served 85,000 individuals through our drive through giveaways, and due to the pandemic, we expect to serve more than 3,000 families at this year’s Thanksgiving distribution.  We will have accommodations to serve up to 4,000 if needed.

Friends of the Poor and the Robeson Family, along with our partners Lackawanna County Area Agency on Aging, Meals on Wheels of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and the Scranton Area Ministerium, are proud that in times of great uncertainty and increased need, our community has come together to find a way to continue our great Thanksgiving traditions.

We humbly ask all people to reach into their hearts and donate whatever they can. The Robeson family has ordered over $140,000 in food items, including 3,000 turkeys and trimmings to make the baskets. A donation of $30.00 sponsors a family of four. Please send your donation of $30.00 or whatever you can to: Family to Family Program, PO Box 13, Scranton, PA 18501. www.ftfthanks.org  **Donations may also be made by texting “thanks” to 570-525-5956**

Friends of the Poor is looking for donors to cover the cost of the 76 30-pound turkeys that are ordered, along with other food and takeout items. Please call the Friends of the Poor office at 570-340-6086, email friendsofthepoor@fotp-ihm.org, or send donations to: Friends of the Poor, Thanksgiving Community Dinner, 2300 Adams Ave., Scranton, PA 18509.  www.fotp-ihm.org 

Friends of the Poor would like to note that 2020 marks 44 years of our community’s commitment to and compassion for our less fortunate neighbors, who would otherwise go without a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Please note that the success of this event would not be possible without your support.  

Friends of the Poor “Clothes Line for Men” serves 1000th client

Mens Dress for Success Pix.jpg

The Friends of the Poor outfitted Shelton Miles, back row, center, as its 1000th client for re-entry into the workforce.  The organization is operating its Clothes Line For Men program out of its new location on 1214 Linden St., Scranton.  The structure was donated to the agency by the University of Scranton.

Front row, from left: Carol Melucci, Peter Kramer and Commissioner Patrick M. O’Malley.  Back row, same order: Oksana Shestak, Mary Ann Krisa, Kellie Basting, Mr. Miles, Roy Evans, Veterans Employment Representative at Career Link; Sr. Ann Walsh, IHM, Friends of the Poor Director; and Bonnie Haluska.