Westfield residents encouraged to give

WESTFIELD- The 12th Citizen Police Academy and the Westfield Police Department are teaming up with Westfield Schools for the third annual food drive for the Westfield Community Table and the Westfield Soup Kitchen today from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. to collect food, water, and paper supplies for those is need.
Syed Haq, member of the 12th Citizen Police Academy Westfield Police Department, was shopping in a local grocery store three years ago, when he heard a child’s voice in the next aisle over asking his mother if they could buy his favorite food. His mother replied saying they couldn’t afford it, but maybe next time. After thinking about it for a few moments, Haq went to go buy it for them, but they were already gone. After hearing this, Haq came up with the idea of having a food drive and went looking to the Police Department to back him up on it. They replied with a “yes”, and with their support and the support from many others, the food drive began.
For both the first and second year, they filled a pickup truck, two SUVS and two cars, but are hoping that with the support from the community, they will do even better this year. There will collections today in front of Little River Plaza (near Dunkin Donuts,) 187 Munger Hill Road, 79 Liberty Manor, and 126 Glenwood Drive. There will also be drop boxes at the Westfield Police Department, Noble Hospital, Westfield High School, North Middle School, South Middle School, Munger Hill, Highland, and Paper Mill. Checks can be made out to Westfield Community Table or Westfield Soup Kitchen, and can be dropped off at the Westfield Police Department.
North Middle School teacher Kerri C’Miel and her student Katherine Kalill are working alongside Haq, his wife Jane, the 12th Citizen Police Academy, the Westfield Police Department, Mark Salvaio, Blanca Bebete, and Westfield Police Officers John Blascak and Sergeant Eric Hall to make this drive a success.
Haq said that “people who are facing difficulties during this holiday season need to know that those in their own community care about them, even if they are only able to give one canned good or $100” and that as a community “we need to be aware of the needs of others”.
Drop boxes will be collected shortly after 2 p.m. today, although donations can be dropped off at the Westfield Police Department throughout the weekend.

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