Food is Love

2019 3RD ANNUAL

CHANGE YOUR ATTITUDE…CHANGE YOUR LIFE INVITES YOU TO FEED A FAMILY THIS HOLIDAY SEASON!

Do you want to help someone who could use a hand?

Christmas can be the most wonderful time of the year, but it can also be the saddest and loneliest. While many people experience the joy of the season blessed with abundance, others struggle to put food on the table. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to share your blessings with those less fortunate, to let them know they are loved and not forgotten?

Through a collaboration with Chef Todd Daigneault and MySousChefs.com, Change Your Attitude … Change Your Life (CYACYL) is offering it’s 3rd Annual Feed A Family initiative. Through this program, donors can provide a nourishing, festive holiday meal to those in need.

Working with local charities, we will be distributing boxed, pre-cooked dinners. Each meal ordered will feed two families. Our meals include a turkey dinner or ham dinner – each complete with meat, veggies, salad, sides, and dessert.

It’s easy to help out. Simply click on a link below to purchase a turkey or ham dinner. Follow the directions on the site. Make “ship to” address the same as “bill to”. It will not be shipped to you. And that’s it. Your order will feed two families!

Each meal includes the note, “This Meal is Sent with Love”.

Orders must be received by December 15, 2019.
NOTE: When placing the order, make “ship to” address the same as “bill to”.  It will not be shipped to you.

CLICK TO ORDER TURKEY DINNER

CLICK TO ORDER HAM DINNER

The Feed A Family initiative was amazing! Joan and Chef Todd were wonderful to work with – from planning to delivery! Jersey Battered Women’s Service families received fully prepared holiday dinners including roasted turkey, whipped potatoes, gravy, sage stuffing, sauté green beans, cranberry sauce, rolls, and cookies. The delicious ready-to-eat meals made the holidays a lot brighter for our families hurt by domestic violence. The portions were so generous that most families had enough for leftovers the next day! ~ Regina Braham, JBWS VP, Community Relations

Covenant House New Jersey is grateful to CYACYL. Their Feed a Family initiative provided young people that are transitioning out of homelessness a festive holiday meal. The holidays can often be a difficult season for many. This program reminds them that they are not alone and that there are many people who truly care. What an incredible blessing! ~ Janette Scrozzo, Development Director CHNJ


BACK STORY

In early December of 2017, a chef friend called me and during our conversation, it somehow came up that we should figure out a way to feed families in need during the holidays. I’m not even sure how we got on the topic, we were probably joking about it, but that discussion got me thinking that there was no reason why we couldn’t. I just needed to figure out how.

After some consideration, I decided to create a program, under my company’s Change Your Attitude … Change Your Life (CYACYL) brand, by which people could purchase a dinner on the chef’s catering website for someone they knew was in need. We would then ship it to that person’s home with the note, “This meal is sent with love.”

We were so excited about the thought of helping others. To be honest, I had no idea if this would work, but I figured that we had nothing to lose. If we fed one family, then it was one less family that went hungry. That would be a good thing!

Three weeks before Christmas, the CYACYL Feed a Family initiative was born. We offered two meal options, turkey or ham, that were each full course dinners that fed a family. Each pre-cooked, boxed meal included meat, potatoes, green beans, stuffing, cranberry sauce, salad, rolls, butter, dessert. We provided everything a family would need to have a nourishing, festive dinner!

A few people purchased meals for people they knew, but the majority bought a meal with the request that we send it to a family in need. I couldn’t believe the response; I was taken off guard. We had many meals ordered and I didn’t know what to do with them. It was a wonderful problem to have!

I reached out to a friend who works at Covenant House in North Jersey and asked if she knew anyone in need. She excitedly provided a list of recently homeless families that were placed in their transitional housing. We fed every one of them!

I can’t adequately express the joy that I felt with such an accomplishment. It was a successful first attempt, more than I could have imaged. I thought that was the end.

Then, last year around the middle of November, something amazing happened. People reached out to me and asked it we were feeding families again. I did not expect that response and wasn’t planning on doing it again. But, they shared with me the joy they felt from giving in such an intimate way, so I knew we had to take it on again.

With some experience under my belt, I had a better vision of how the program should be implemented. I wanted to cut costs and increase efficiency. In year one, we incurred shipping charges sending each box to a residence. That was money I deemed as wasted as it could have purchased more food. In the second year, rather than shipping to a home, I decided to deliver individually boxed meals to a charity destination for pickup. I asked Chef Todd if he could feed two families for the same price if he added the money we allocated for shipping to his food cost. He said he would make it work! So, that is what we did. Year two, for a $60 meal purchase, rather than feed one family, we fed two!

With the additional meals in 2018, we were able to feed the Covenant House families and all of the abused women and their children living in safe housing provided by Jersey Battered Women’s Service. The feedback was so supportive and encouraging! I knew this had to continue.

It is now 2019, our third year, and the Feed a Family initiative is in full swing. This year we are adding veterans, through the New Jersey Veteran’s Network, to our recipient list.

The Feed a Family initiative has become more than I could have ever imagined. Just think, two friends jokingly talking about feeding families at Christmas, and now their silly little idea is touching and changing lives. Over and over I am reminded that anything in life is possible. Never think an idea is silly or unachievable. Remember the old saying, “He who takes no chances, wins nothing.”

2018 Holiday Meal Program Photos

Included with each dinner: Meat, potatoes, green beans, stuffing, cranberry sauce, salad, rolls, butter, dessert. The meal is boxed and delivered to a family. This is the way the turkey dinner was delivered to families last year.

 

How each meal is packaged. A family receives a box that includes the entire meal.