Family Promise of Monmouth County (FPMC) held its ninth annual Cardboard Box City fundraising event in Tinton Falls, NJ on Friday, October 5th. Hundreds of Monmouth County students, youth groups, faith-based organizations and scouting groups of all denominations descended on the grounds of Monmouth Church of Christ to simulate a night of homelessness while raising awareness and money to support children and families currently experiencing homelessness in Monmouth County.
(October 9, 2018) – Family Promise of Monmouth County (FPMC) held its ninth annual Cardboard Box City fundraising event in Tinton Falls, NJ on Friday, October 5th. Hundreds of Monmouth County students, youth groups, faith-based organizations and scouting groups of all denominations descended on the grounds of Monmouth Church of Christ to simulate a night of homelessness while raising awareness and money to support children and families currently experiencing homelessness in Monmouth County.
While Monmouth County is considered one of the more affluent counties in the Garden State, data affirms that more than 200 children are homeless on any given night.
FPMC is the only emergency shelter for families in the county and has served over 350 families since 2001. For the past nine years, the organization has held the Cardboard Box City event and the participant list has swelled exponentially since its inception. This year’s total was a direct result of youth-led fundraising, corporate sponsorships from Mario Venancio of Gloria Nilson & Co. Real Estate, Merrick Construction, and a major donation from the Stepanski Family Charitable Trust (SFCT). During the event, board member Jessica Stepanski and her husband Matthew presented FPMC Executive Director Christine Love with a check in the amount of $30,000 for the purchase of a new 15-passenger van to transport the organization’s families.
“We are beyond grateful for this donation, as transportation is the crux of our program,” said Love of the gift and its purpose. “Not only do we transport our 15 guests to our 13 host congregations weekly, we also transport them to vital appointments with the Board of Social Services, job interviews, medical appointments, school, work and community-based events.”
The donation was made on behalf of Matt and Melinda Stepanski in honor of their beloved mother, Jane Stepanski, one of the founders of the SFCT. The family echoed their sentiments by sharing Jane “was a great advocate for families in need and always sought to bring relief to homeless people. It would have given her great pride to make such a meaningful donation to such a worthy cause.”
FPMC Board President Elaine Young has participated in all nine Cardboard City events and expressed her “sincere pride in the youth of Monmouth County who have taken the lead on one of the most important social issues of our time” when asked to reflect on the CBC’s impact. The successful event comes on the heels of FPMC being granted final building permits to occupy their new, centrally-located Day Center on Fort Monmouth. The new site will enable the organization to expand its footprint and impact for the families of Monmouth County.
About Family Promise Monmouth County Family Promise of Monmouth County is an affiliate of National Family Promise, which works with community agencies, faith-based organizations, churches and synagogues to provide immediate access to emergency shelter, food, clothing, transportation and comprehensive case management to families facing a housing crisis. FPMC is the only shelter program for families with minor children in Monmouth
Since 2001, FPMC has provided a safe haven for over 350 families and expanded to offer more comprehensive programming such as intensive case management, resume’ writing/interviewing skills, financial literacy training, and basic life skills training to increase self-sufficiency. The organization provides over 12,000 meals and more than 5,100 bed-nights for families in need and relies on over 1,200 volunteers and 40+ congregations.
*About the Stepanski Family Charitable Trust -The Stepanski Family Charitable Trust is a 501(c)(3) charitable trust established by Jane & Tony Stepanski to support national charitable, scientific, literary, cultural, arts and educational organizations with an emphasis on the great New York Metropolitan Area.
Details: Participants in Cardboard Box City raise a minimum of $100 in pledges and contributions and sleep overnight in a cardboard box “home” as a resident of Box City. There will be activities, entertainment and food for participants. Awards will be given to the participants who raise the most money and to the most creative dwelling. Cardboard Box City is open to all: families, adults and children (children must be supervised by an adult), scouting troops (youth to adult ratio 5:1), and youth groups. Participants supply their own dwellings (usually large refrigerator, washer/dryer boxes that can be picked up at appliance stores). There is also the opportunity to be a “virtual resident” by raising the pledges and sleeping at home.