University of Scranton students prep Easter meals with Friends of the Poor

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SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) — Dozens of students from the University of Scranton are delivering meals that will help more than 150 families.

“‘Ministry’, because it is any work that we do for the good of the community. And it’s not just a one-time thing, it’s something that lasts longer and makes an impact not only on them, but us as well in the community,” said Marino Angeloni, junior at University of Scranton.

Students involved in putting the meals together, say it’s a nice opportunity to help and give back to the community, but also come together while doing so.

“We are right now bagging onions and carrots to add into the dinners. Especially with COVID, we’re really lacking that interaction with each other. So, I think it is really great that we’re able to come together, and stay socially distant, and put together these meals to give back to the community,” said Sarah Brown, University of Scranton graduate student.

The meals include a full Easter dinner, dessert included.

“Everybody will get a ham and potatoes, and carrots, and onions, and some canned goods, and a desert. So, yes, we’re packing that in individual bags, and then we will take it to three low-income housing developments,” Pat Vaccaro, director of Center for Service & Social Justice said. 

While many are involved in putting the meals together, they are ensuring the food is COVID safe for the families receiving them.

“We definitely have been taking a lot of measures to get around the precautions and making sure everything is completely safe for these families, and for us as well.” sophomore Brandon DaGrosa said.

“It is part of our community outreach with the Scranton community. And during such a big time of need, it is very important for us to reach out to our community,” Maire Garvey, University of Scranton senior.

Many students involved in the meal packing have also supported Friends of the Poor during other charity opportunities.

“We really had a hard time, trying to get volunteers. We had a core group that’s really come out to each of our events. And especially the university students. You know, they’ve really supported us and helped with ‘We Care Wednesdays’, and bringing people food in our developments, and then helping us with the holidays as well,” President & CEO of Friends of the Poor Meghan Loftus said.

“Really harkens back to the university Jesuit values of ‘cura personalis’, and really being more, by serving more,” Angeloni said.

The annual food distribution event will take place March 31 at Scranton High School, no registration is required.

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