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On Your Mark Summer 2019
A Quarterly Newsletter of Fisherman’s Mark

The mission of Fisherman’s Mark is to strengthen our community. With responsive programs and services that promote stability, health and education, Fisherman’s Mark is an advocate for positive change in the lives of our neighbors and their families.

What’s Happening Now At The Mark: Feeding Local Children Through The Weekend Backpack Program

Food Insecurity is a critical issue, and nowhere are the consequences of malnutrition more significant than in children. Lack of basic nutrition impacts child development, school performance, and long-term health and well-being.

This Spring, Fisherman’s Mark, Lambertville Public School and NORWESCAP (the Food Bank for Northwestern New Jersey) formed an alliance to provide food for local children. Kids who qualify for the school’s Free- and Reduced Lunch program get meals during the week, but what happens on the weekends? Through the Weekend Backpack Program these children now each receive a bag loaded with breakfast and lunch foods to take home every Friday.

We continually partner with school personnel to support families in crisis and even provide healthy snacks for teachers from South Hunterdon Regional High School to have on hand for students in need. It’s a simple idea: well-fed children are better prepared to learn as well as grow. Fisherman’s Mark feeding programs ensure that local children have that basic nutrition they need to grow and learn and thrive.

Feeding Local Children Through The Weekend Backpack Program


Grow NJ Kids Accreditation

Lambertville Academy is excited to announce their participation in the statewide accreditation program, Grow NJ Kids. Since 2006, Lambertville Academy has held accreditation status through the National Association for the Education of Young Children, NAEYC, but has most recently joined the growing number of Early Childhood Learning Centers enrolled in the NJ quality rating and improvement system.

Grow NJ Kids is a state-sponsored initiative to raise the quality of early learning throughout New Jersey. Accreditation programs like Grow NJ Kids and NAEYC set standards and develop guidelines that define excellence for early childhood professionals and programs.

Programs are evaluated based on five categories of standards that include Safe and Healthy Learning Environments, Curriculum and Learning Environments, Family and Community Engagement, Professional Development and Administration and Management.

Lisa Erxleben, Director of Lambertville Academy, noted that the best part of participating in Grow NJ Kids is, “the support and resources our program, families, and staff will benefit from. Through this initiative, we will gain key coaching, training and professional development opportunities and scholarships.”

Early Childhood programs are given access to resources to evaluate and improve their programs while integrating families into the assessment process. Program improvement is an ongoing process even after accreditation is achieved. As a Grow NJ Kids participant, Lambertville Academy is proud to continue their long-standing commitment to offering high-quality early childhood education to the children and families living in our community.

Spotlight On Supporters:

There is so much support from the community for Fisherman’s Mark through sharing of time, talent and resources such as donations of food, health and beauty aids and funding. Below is just a sampling of the recent support that keeps us going:

  • BHHS/FOX & ROACH TEAM – Truck Deliveries
  • GEBHARDT & KIEFER LAW – Celebrating their 135th anniversary by donation 135 buckets FULL of cleaning supplies
  • GIANT/MARTIN FOOD STORES – New Hope – Help Bag Hunger AND Day of Service
  • THE HALEY FOUNDATION to Lambertville Academy Enrichment
  • HEATH’S EXXON SERVICE – FREE Shred Event AND Food Drive
  • FIRST NATIONAL BANK OF NEWTOWN – Food Drive
  • MERCK, M.M.D. Finance Team
  • POSTAL CARRIERS – Help “Stamp” Out Hunger Food Drive
  • THOMPSON MEMORIAL PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH
  • SOLEBURY SCHOOL – Day of Service

and the many individuals and families who celebrate benchmark birthday’s, weddings, anniversaries, etc. by donating to Fisherman’s Mark. YOUR SUPPORT IS WHAT MAKES THIS ALL WORK! THANK YOU!!

Making Your Mark: Eagle Scout Spreads Awareness And Paint To Benefit Fisherman’s Mark!

Fisherman’s Mark just got a makeover thanks to Thomas Carey of New Hope, who selected Fisherman’s Mark to be the recipient of his Eagle Scout Project. Thomas selected Fisherman’s Mark because he was impressed by the mission. As he became more educated about the mission of Fisherman’s Mark, he learned that there was a huge need right in his own community. He was inspired to do something extraordinary and leave his mark!

Thomas’s original thought was to paint Fisherman’s Mark, which is located in the old Hibernia Firehouse, but decided that painting alone did not feel like enough so he decided to organize a food drive as well. Thomas felt the food drive was a great way to educate others on the mission of Fisherman’s Mark. Thomas presented his project to his congregation at St. Martin of Tours in New Hope and they fully supported the project.

Thomas assembled a team of friends, family, and other boy scouts to assist in prepping, sanding and painting which took 21 hours over a three- day period. Thomas said his greatest challenge was during the actual painting project; He had under-estimated the condition of some of the old plaster walls as they needed more attention than he allowed time for. Despite the challenges, Thomas was able to complete the project on time and the end result was beautiful. Thomas was also successful in securing the paint and supplies valued at approximately $400 thanks to a very generous donation through Niece Lumber located in Lambertville. “We were thrilled that Thomas had chosen Fisherman’s Mark as the beneficiary of his Eagle Scout project. Thomas went above and beyond giving leadership to this project” said Jennifer Williford, Manager of Business Coordination and Development at Fisherman’s Mark.”

“I was thrilled that everything came together so well but I’m most proud of exceeding my goal in raising over 1,000 pounds of food for the Fisherman’s Mark Food Pantry as well as $500 in cash donations,” said Thomas Carey. “Knowing that this will directly impact people in my own community is a wonderful feeling.”

Fisherman’s Mark Social Services Hosts Point In Time Homelessness Survey Event

The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development mandates the yearly statewide point-in-time count of the homeless, designed to understand the nature of New Jersey’s homeless population. NJ Counts, the annual statewide Point-in-Time count of individuals and families experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness in the State, took place this past January.

Due to the lack of affordable or supportive housing and the absence of an emergency homeless shelter in Hunterdon County, individuals and families in our area are all too frequently forced to find alternatives to housing they can afford, often a car or a place not meant for human habitation.

Therefore, volunteers throughout the state sought out and surveyed our neighbors experiencing homelessness in shelters, woods, under bridges, in vacant buildings and other locations. In support of this effort, Fisherman’s Mark Social Services hosted an event providing housing insecure neighbors with the opportunity to complete the survey, enjoy free snacks and coffee, and receive backpacks filled with toiletries, emergency food, and clothing. All of the supplies were generously donated by local restaurants and organizations.