A rabbi, a pastor, and an imam walk into a bar, beginning the Manna Project of the North Shore. God Feeds God’s People was their idea to bring north shore people in need of more food and the goal of the project.
In 2018 Pastor James Bixby of the Clifton Lutheran Church and Rabbi David Cohen-Henriquez of Temple Sinai met to explore the possibility of working together for the greater good. In 2019, Fawaz Abusharkh and the Islamic Center of the North Shore joined in this journey to broaden the religious base and outreach.
“Rabbi and the pastor got together and said, look I know our religions are different, but there’s one thing that we can all agree on is that everyone should have food,” said a lifetime volunteer at Clifton Lutheran Church, Karin Ernst.
The Manna Project of the North Shore partnered with 31 local businesses in Marblehead, Swampscott, and Salem. In December, the local businesses donate one object to the project as an award. The project pulls a name every day in January of someone who bought raffle tickets and they win that day’s prize. The local businesses get promoted through live videos and raffles as well. $10 per ticket to enter the raffle.
“It could be a gift basket. Shubie does this beautiful gift basket for us every year, and it’s gorgeous,” said Ernst.
Raising $8,700 in the first two years, Manna Project of the North Shore was able to purchase, pack and deliver 18,224 healthy, easy-to-prepare meals to supplement the diet of families at risk.
With the limitations required by the Covid pandemic they adapted by raising and delivering about $19,700 worth of shelf-stable food to the following nonprofit organizations; Catholic Charities, Council of Aging in Nahant, Haven for Hunger, Lynn Economic Opportunity, Lynn Community Health Center, Lynn Shelter, New American Center, No Child Goes Hungry, St. Joseph’s Food Pantry, Washington Street Baptist Pantry, Beverly Bootstraps, Lynn Hunger Network, and My Brothers Table.
The raffle tickets are for sale now at the Clifton Lutheran Church. People can also make donations online.