Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Local Businesses and First Responders Join Forces to Stuff a Boat Full of Toys


Donate new,  unwrapped toys to the Season of Hope Toy Drive to help Sussex and Warren County NJ children.

The annual “Stuff the Boat” toy drive coordinated by Branchville business Off Shore Marine to benefit the Season of Hope Toy Drive has been launched.  Area residents are encouraged to bring gift cards, funds, and new, unwrapped toys to fill a 22’ long 2020 Nautique GS22 sport boat at the business, which is located at 352 Route 206 in Branchville.  Off Shore Marine will also accept Kohl’s Cash certificates which will be redeemed for items appropriate for teens.  Members of the fire departments in Branchville, Frankford, and Sussex, along with the Blue Ridge Rescue Squad, the Sussex Fire Department Emergency Medical Service, and the Sussex Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary, the Wanderers Car Club, and the Sussex Kiwanis Club are also gathering items on behalf of Off Shore Marine.  The Stuff the Boat initiative at Off Shore Marine will continue to accept toy donations through Sunday, December 20th. 

“We have been very blessed in our lives and we have the opportunity to share these blessings,” remarked Off Shore Marine owner Sherri Cecchini.  “We believe in the opportunities Project Self-Sufficiency offers to the people it serves which allow them to create a better life for themselves and their families.  The toy drive is just one part of that vision and that is where we try to help.”

“This unique collaboration between a local business and area first responders perfectly demonstrates the true spirit of giving during this holiday season,” commented Deborah Berry-Toon, Executive Director of Project Self-Sufficiency.  “Now more than ever, we are grateful for this community’s steadfast commitment to our neighbors in need.  Thousands of families will be helped by this initiative.”

The Season of Hope Toy Drive benefits thousands of children in Sussex and Northern Morris and Warren counties.  The effort is driven and coordinated by Project Self-Sufficiency, along with its partners First Hope Bank, Gravity DesignWorks, Intercar Mercedes Benz, Max 106.3FM, The New Jersey Herald, Off Shore Marine, Pass it Along, The Printing Center, Selective Insurance Company of America, Shop Rite, Stocker Bus Company, the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce, Sussex County Community College, Sussex Honda, Sussex Technical School, United States Marine Corps Toys for Tots, WNNJ 103.7FM, and WSUS 102.3FM to benefit local families in need. 

Contributions of new, unwrapped toys for the Stuff the Boat campaign will be welcomed at Off Shore Marine, 352 Route 206 in Branchville through Sunday, December 20th.   Toys, gift cards and monetary donations will also be gratefully received at Project Self-Sufficiency, 127 Mill Street in Newton, Monday – Thursday, from 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. or Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.  To make a donation online, or for more information, visit www.projectselfsufficiency.org or call 973-940-3500.

Friday, October 30, 2020

Virtual and Drive-By Halloween Celebrations Hosted by Project Self-Sufficiency


Halloween Drive By Celebration at Sussex County Family Success Center.

Blustery skies and a public health crisis could not stop local families from celebrating a special, socially-distanced Halloween Spookmania at the Sussex County Family Success Center located at Project Self-Sufficiency.  The organization’s usual in-person festivities morphed into dueling virtual and drive-by events; those who did not feel comfortable leaving their homes enjoyed ghoulish crafts and spooky games over Zoom, while others drove through the agency’s Newton campus to receive treats and prizes from costumed staff members while snuggled safely in their vehicles.  Patrons and staff were serenaded with ghostly tunes by violinist Susie Mittelstadt.

“We continue to be amazed by our dedicated staff who have demonstrated boundless enthusiasm and creativity as they address the unique demands of serving our participants during this pandemic,” remarked Project Self-Sufficiency Executive Director Deborah Berry-Toon.  “Today’s events have allowed children and families to kick off their Halloween weekend in a safe yet spectacular way.  We are particularly grateful for the support of the Family Success Center Parent Advisory Board during this challenging time.  This event launches our seasonal festivities and we are looking forward to helping families celebrate Thanksgiving and the holidays.”

The Sussex County Family Success Center at Project Self-Sufficiency is a program of support which includes parenting skills training, economic self-sufficiency services, family activities, legal education services, information about health and nutrition, referrals, advocacy, and other services.  All activities are free and open to the public.  For information about the Sussex County Family Success Center at Project Self-Sufficiency, visit www.sussexcountyfamilysuccesscenter.org.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Free Prom Dresses Available

Teen girls in need of a prom dress are invited to select a gown from the collection at the “Sister-to-Sister” Prom Shop hosted by Project Self-Sufficiency.  The thirteenth annual “Sister-to-Sister Prom Shop” will be open for one week only, March 30th – April 2nd, 3:00 – 7:00 p.m., April 3rd, 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. and April 4th, 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  In addition to new and gently used dresses of all lengths and sizes, the Prom Shop will feature shoes, wraps, handbags, and jewelry so that patrons can create the perfect ensemble.  The “Sister-to-Sister” Prom Shop offers gowns and accessories to any teen girl in need; no registration is required.  Project Self-Sufficiency is located at 127 Mill Street in Newton. 

The prom shop at Project Self-Sufficiency routinely distributes more than 200 dresses to teen girls each year, making it the largest distributor of gently used formal wear in northwestern New Jersey.  “We are anticipating that the need will continue to be great for many young women in our area,” commented Deborah Berry-Toon, Executive Director of Project Self-Sufficiency.  “Attending the prom is a once in a lifetime event, and we are thankful that our community continues to help these young women to have a memorable evening by donating formal wear to the Sister-to-Sister Prom Shop year after year.”

Dresses and other types of formal wear are currently being accepted for display.  The “Sister-to-Sister” Prom Shop is made possible by the Sussex County Family Success Center at Project Self-Sufficiency.  For information about donating dresses and accessories to the Sister-to-Sister Prom Shop or to find out more about any of the programs at Project Self-Sufficiency, call 973-940-3500 or 844-807-3500, or visit www.projectselfsufficiency.org.