The donation was made possible through the Causeway Family of Dealership and Causeway CARes.
MANAHAWKIN, NJ – Starve Poverty International started the New Year with a vehicle donation for its Barnegat-based food pantry. The vehicle was funded by Causeway Family of Dealerships and Causeway CARes.
In 2022, Causeway received the “CausewayWheels” vehicle donation application from Starve Poverty International. David Wintrode, President of Causeway Family of Dealerships/Causeway CARes, saw the need and awarded Starve Poverty International with a van. “We saw the population that they serve, and we were impressed by the dedication of the Starve Poverty team,” Wintrode said.
Joe Stroffolino, Director of Advertising and Marketing of Causeway Family of Dealerships/Causeway CARes stated, “Shortly after receiving Starve Poverty International’s application, we received a Ford Transit hybrid van in our dealership that was a perfect fit for the organization,” Stroffolino said.
Ron Fraser, Founder and CEO of Starve Poverty International, says its mission is to “break the chains of poverty” by deploying people into specific communities to help humanitarian, educational, medical, social, and spiritual needs; targeting teams toward specific projects that benefit poverty-stricken individuals or groups in the United States or abroad.
Starve Poverty was born 25 years ago out of a burden that Fraser had after experiencing the extreme poverty of Mexico. After a few trips, Fraser realized the language barrier was too great for him. Fraser was later invited to Exuma, Bahamas to teach courses in pastoral counseling. “I soon realized that the economical struggle and the poverty on the island was greater than just the counseling,” he said. “That’s when I changed my focus to ‘breaking the chains of poverty’.”
Since its inception, Starve Poverty International has evolved into a “state-side” all volunteer organization. “We are reaching out to municipalities, civic organizations, schools and churches to identify underprivileged individuals and families that need home repairs or other practical necessities that are not being met by their current resources.”
In line with its “state-side” goals, Starve Poverty believed strongly that an area that the local community needed assistance with was food. “We have taken on that challenge and officially opened our food pantry on February 3, 2022 in Barnegat that serves individuals of all ages,” Fraser said. “Since we opened, we have served 2,600 individuals. It has been an incredible experience and something that we have wanted for a very long time. We have also utilized this facility to run trainings for youth and adults to learn more about different trades.”
Out of all of its outreach efforts, the food pantry has produced the most activity for Starve Poverty International. “We have a group of volunteers that come in every Wednesday to drive to Fulfill, our partner agency, to pick up food donations,” said Fraser. “On Thursdays, our volunteers open the food pantry to distribute it. Prior to receiving the new van, we have been using our personal vehicles to pick up and deliver a limited amount of food donations, now that is no longer a concern.”
Wintrode adds, “Starve Poverty International has filled the gaps between the communities of Barnegat and Pinewood Estates where there is a heavy population of low-income individuals and senior citizens who are on fixed incomes.”
The food pantry has also brought a sense of community to those who visit. “When individuals and families come to pick up food donations, they sit and have coffee and donuts together. Some stay for a few hours. These people need us to be here. They are building a community together.”
“One of the biggest encouragements that we receive are people who have come for a need and turned their lives around and now volunteers with Starve Poverty,” said Fraser. “It’s a complete circle. We are building a community.”
To volunteer or donate to Starve Poverty, please visit starvepoverty.org.
About The CauseWheels Vehicle Donation
The CauseWheels Vehicle Donation Program exists to help its neighbors and positively impact Ocean County. The program started in 2019 after The Causeway Family of Dealerships had two requests for vehicle donations to local non-profit organizations. Both requests were graciously accommodated. This prompted the idea to follow up Causeway’s 2019’s 50th Anniversary celebration with the new CauseWheels Vehicle Donation Program.
About Causeway CARes
Causeway CARes’ mission is to make a direct and profound impact in and around Ocean County in the areas of education, food security and quality of life. Founded in 2004 and funded by the Wintrode Family Foundation, Inc., Causeway CARes strives to make the community a better place to live grow and thrive. To learn more, visit CausewayCARes.com.