What started as a school project has quickly become a passion for Cat Bahamondes and Kayla Gitter. The two JTHS seniors were assigned a positivity project for their media studies class and decided to help out the community by picking up food donations and delivering them to township food pantries.
The whole thing was to use the media to spread positivity,” Gitter said. “Cat and I really wanted to reach the community. We knew families were struggling and people were losing jobs and having a tough time getting food.”
The pair posted a flyer on Facebook and their personal social media pages, as well as the school district’s social media, on April 22. They did their first pickup and delivery on April 24, bringing three carloads of food to the pantry at Our Lady Star of the Sea Church in Lake Hopatcong.
“Father Chris was very thankful for all the food we brought today,” Gitter said.
The girls have asked for any nonperishables, including pasta, sauce, boxed foods, peanut butter, jelly, cereal, canned goods, condiments, as well as paper goods and soaps, deodorants, and other toiletries.
“We got a lot of what we asked for today,” Gitter said. “But we also got things like clothing and a lot of pet food.”
The girls will be doing five more runs of food donations, for the next five Fridays. They will be delivering food to the New Hope Food Pantry at the Milton United Methodist and the Crossroads Food Pantry on Route 23.
When they’re not delivering food, both Gitter and Bahamondes are enjoying online learning. “It’s good to know that I have something to be doing every day,” Gitter said, “ “and it’s fun to see the others projects for our class.”
Post-pandemic, Bahamondes plans to attend Monmouth University to major in communications, while Gitter will go to Clemson to major in health science with an aim toward hospital management.