Jewish Renaissance Foundation Event Calls Attention To Poverty In Middlesex County

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EDISON —  In order to highlight problems of poverty, growing economic inequality, and the need to bring numerous struggling families and individuals into the middle class, the Jewish Renaissance Foundation (JRF) hosted a Proclamation/Partner Breakfast this week as part of National Community Action Month.

The Proclamation/Partner Breakfast was held at the Edison Municipal Complex on Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Mayor Antonia Ricigliano issued the proclamation, followed by a brief overview of highlights and challenges in the communities by JRF CEO, Alexandra Mansonet-Cross.

As a state designated Community Action Agency, the JRF serves the communities of Edison, Perth Amboy, Woodbridge, South Amboy, Carteret, Highland Park, Sayreville and Metuchen and joins Community Action Agencies across the country in hosting events and activities in May aimed at highlighting poverty problems and solutions. Due to the uncertain economic climate -still reeling from the Great Recession and high unemployment rates- Community Action Agencies feel it is critical to focus local, state, and national attention and efforts on helping impoverished people move into the middle class, creating jobs, and growing the economy.

“We want to call attention to increasing poverty problems and financial difficulties many in our community are facing,” said Alexandra Cross, CEO of the JRF. “For the past few years, we’ve been dealing with the weak economy that is creating unemployment for millions of people, many of them low-income. This is what creates economic inequality. If you don’t give vulnerable Americans resources and opportunities to succeed economically, they will continue to live in poverty.”

The national office of the Community Action Partnership designates May as National Community Action Month to recognize Community Action Agencies’ work fighting poverty on the local level. Each year, Community Action Agencies help 20 million Americans achieve financial stability through programs such as Head Start, Weatherization, job training and placement, financial education, housing, energy assistance, and transportation.

“The JRF creates opportunities for people to thrive and prosper personally and economically through a variety of programs and services that encourage financial literacy, help people complete their education, assist with childcare, job training, and even purchase a home,” said Cross. The Jewish Renaissance Foundation’s services are needed now more than ever in order to help people escape poverty and have a chance to enter the middle class.”

The Jewish Renaissance Foundation located at the Proprietary House on 149 Kearny Avenue in Perth Amboy was established in 1995 as a faith-based, nonprofit corporation with central offices in Perth Amboy. As a Community Action Agency, it strives to overcome poverty and hopelessness throughout Middlesex County East. We believe in changing lives by creating hope and self-sufficiency, and we succeed by providing individuals, children and families with essential health and human services, community development and youth programs.


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