Somerville: Thanksgiving meal turns to takeout this year

The Samaritan Homeless Interim Program (SHIP), will host its 31st Holiday Meal Program on Thanksgiving day, November 26, for those in need of something to eat in Somerset County. But this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the charity meal will be “to-go,” the organization announced.

The Thanksgiving Day meals will be served from the United Reformed Church, 100 W. Main St. in Somerville, which has for long had a partnership with SHIP. Serving time will be noon to 2 p.m.

Cecause of the pandemic, SHIP’s resources have been depleted, and community support is needed, Executive Director Thomas O’Leary said in a statement.

“Through the Grace of God and the help of people of goodwill, we have been able to keep SHIP under sail during these trying times. There are more and more people arriving in their lifeboats and coming aboard SHIP looking for assistance. The increasing and unending request for emergency food rations has emptied our pantry, refrigerators, and freezers.

“Hundreds more are coming to our Mobile Soup Kitchen looking for meals — SHIP is glad to be known as the agency of last resort. It is not uncommon for many ministers, church secretaries, lawyers, agency directors, and workers in this area to send people to SHIP if there is nowhere else to get help for the person. If SHIP has the resources available, SHIP helps anyone in need. Please recognize that you are SHIP!

If you provide the resources, we can help, but if we do not have resources, where will the homeless and hungry go? We pray that you please continue or start your support of our programs.”

SHIP also needs 30 volunteers to roast and carve turkeys or carve a spiral ham and drop them off between Nov. 23 and Nov. 25 at SHIP at 87 E. High St. in Somerville. Volunteers also are needed to serve on Thanksgiving Day.

Another way to help is to provide a $40 donation to feed a family of four on Thanksgiving. Credit card and PayPal donations can be made at ship908.com/. Checks can be made out to Samaritan Homeless Interim Program and sent to 87 East High St., Somerville, NJ 08876.

Families who need a turkey can call SHIP at 908-393-9545 to reserve one. If you are able to donate a spiral ham, you can leave a message for Thomas O’Leary at that number.

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