Newark YMCA

In 2016, Hudson County moved subsidized homeless families from the closed Starlite Motel in Jersey City to the 8th floor of the Newark YMCA (even though it’s outside of Hudson Cty). These families include victims of domestic violence, those in financial straits (lost job, fire, etc.), or some recovering from drug addiction. The Newark YMCA offers temporary housing (up to weeks/months), with 33 rooms on the floor and normally about 50 children on site. The Jersey City Basket Brigade began Thanksgiving care package deliveries to these homeless Hudson County families in 2015 (at the Starlite Motel) and in 2016, 2017 & 2018 (at the Newark YMCA). Staff at the Y now provide us with wish lists and a schedule of children sizes for PJs, diapers, and other needs.

Mommies Heart-to-Heart

A wonderful group of local families focused on teaching children to become givers through homeless food drives, visiting elderly care facilities and welcoming/supporting refugees. Long on both heart and physical donations, but short on vehicles, Mommies H2H dovetailed their Nov canned food drive with the Jersey City Basket Brigade’s Newark YMCA drop-off in 2016, 2017 and 2018.  In Decembeer 2017, JCBB Board member Dr. Muni Tahzib collaborated with Mommies H2H to deliver Christmas gifts collected by Mommies H2H for the Newark YMCA kids and many other charity organizations.

Hope House

Hope House, an emergency shelter for homeless women with children, helps families become self-sufficient by giving them an opportunity for decision making and for assuming responsibility for improving their situation under the supervision, support, and guidance of shelter staff. Housing up to 20 mothers and their children, the program offers short-term supervised residence, including three meals a day, assessment/planning, case management, housing, education, food, and clothing. In Nov 2016, 2017 & 2018, the Jersey City Basket Brigade delivered PJs and winter gear (hats/scarves/gloves) for the Hope House kids and their mothers.

York Street Project

Formally established in 1989, the York Street Project has been helping homeless and economically disadvantaged women and children break the cycle of poverty for roughly 30 years. Established by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace, a religious order that began service work with poor immigrant women in Nottingham England  in the 1880s, the Jersey City York Street Project includes programs for housing, education and childcare. The Jersey City Basket Brigade provided Thanksgiving period drop-offs of wish list items for the York Street Project in 2015, 2016 and 2018.

Garden State Episcopal Community Development Corp (GSECDC)

GSECDC has over 25 years providing affordable housing and social services. As a non-profit developer of Jersey City affordable housing, GSECDC has invested ~$40 mln converting over 90 abandoned properties into quality housing for over 630 people. The charity’s county mandated “COORDINATED ENTRY PROGRAM” (CEP) provides centralized homeless services, including comprehensive intake/assessment, case management, referrals to homeless housing options, and supportive services. JCBB began work with GSECDC in 2016, when we first delivered sandwich supplies, snacks, coffee supplies, breakfast cereals, cleaning supplies, band-aids and toilet paper. A larger dropoff with even more supplies (including sox/underwear) was made in 2018. GSECDC initially referred JCBB to the Hope House families.

Love for Puerto Rico

Love 4 PR was a grassroots initiative, organized and led by Jersey City Basket Brigade Board member Dr. Muni Tahzib. Dr. Tahzib organized a similar medical mission after Haiti’s earthquake in 2010, and after Hurricane Sandy in NJ in 2012, she once again organized a group of volunteer medical professionals and enlisted many thousands of donors (including individuals, hospitals, and companies) to provide medical and surgical equipment, generators, cleaning and hygiene supplies, and transportation for the medical relief mission that flew directly into San Juan. The team of 30, were able to stay at the FEMA headquarters and to collaborate directly with the National Guard, the military, FEMA and many other organizations and thus were able to travel to many deserted areas on the island, providing medical and humanitarian assistance to those in need.


Grace Community Services (GCS) has a weekend homeless breakfast service as well as an elderly support programs. Members of the Jersey City Basket Brigade Board as well as other JCBB volunteers/donors have also volunteered over the years to prepare & serve breakfast at the GCS weekend shelter usually once or twice a month. In 2016, Rev Laurie of the Grace Church referred JCBB to a recovering Jersey City family (incl 5 kids). We were able to donate over $350 for clothing, bus passes and a little help with apartment security deposit through the Pastor’s discretionary fund.