Council of Jewish Organizations of Staten Island, and NYPD Annual Turkey Giveaway
On, November 22, 2022, the Council of Jewish Organizations of Staten Island, NYPD and Project Hospitality once again partnered up with Assemblyman Michael Cusick and NYPD Precinct 121 in providing turkey and other Thanksgiving foods to nearly 300 Staten Island families in need.
Mendy Mirocznik, president of COJO thanked Chief Terence Hurson, executive officer, Patrol Borough Staten Island; Lt. Rafet Awad, commanding officer, Community Affairs, Patrol Borough Staten Island; and Captain Eric Waldhelm, commanding officer of Precinct 121 for once again opening the precinct for what has become an annual COJO/NYPD tradition, the Thanksgiving turkey and food distribution. Chief Hurson commented in 2013 how when he was the inaugural commanding officer of Pct. 121 and after only a few short months into his command at the precinct he approached COJO’s President Mendy Mirocznik to help the broader Staten Island community in providing support and love for Thanksgiving. “It is through our partnership with such wonderful civic organizations like COJO that the NYPD is able to have established community support and confidence. The support that COJO gives us as we celebrate Thanksgiving helps us to reach out to those in need and help provide for them a meaningful holiday celebration. These celebrations help build community and a better Staten Island. As the Executive Officer of the Staten Island Borough Command, I thank Mendy Mirocznik, Ari Weiss, COJO Security Chairman and Coordinator Staten Island Shomrim, Terry Troia, president and Gloria Novoa, director of volunteers, Project Hospitality and the food pantry team led by Iva Reuven, COJO Service Committee chairperson and Assemblyman Michael Cusick dean of the Staten Island Albany Legislative Delegation for taking the time to bring joy and holiday spirit to the various community members who were served today by this Thanksgiving food give away.”
Assemblyman Cusick, thanked COJO and stated that, “community leaders such as Mendy Mirocznik, Ari Weiss, Terry Troia, Iva Reuven are shining examples of the best of Staten Island. We are a generous Borough and have a wealth of great community organizations such as COJO whose primary sole concern and agenda is to help all Staten Islanders have a better quality of life. These fine community leaders and organizations in Staten Island is what makes me most proud of our home town.”
Mendy Mirocznik, thanked Assemblyman Cusick and the pantry volunteers who collected, assembled, packed and distributed the Turkey and food packages. “A project such as this Turkey and holiday food distribution does more then just help make Thanksgiving a festive holiday for all. It is an example of the broader Staten Island community coming together and working together as one big family. We are standing side by side working together in this room with a team of people who reflect and represent the great diversity of Staten Island. The common thread among all of us is that we as a collective group care about one thing and that is building a community build on a foundation of love, respect and mutual care. As a community we can only succeed if we respect each other and by collaborating together and succeeding on such Thanksgiving food projects is only evidence that we are committed and have succeeded in making Staten Island a better place for all people.”
Additionally, Assemblyman Charles Fall, Edward Jackson, Staten Island Borough Director at Office of Mayor Eric Adams; Fitim Shabani, Staten Island Borough Advocate, Office New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, Lisa Thompson, Community Outreach and Partnership Division, Office of Richmond County District Attorney Michael E. McMahon; Carina Vizhnay, events coordinator & community relations, and member of COJO Service Committee, Jenny Palaguachi, 1199 SEIU/GMYHA and member of COJO Service Committee, and Inspector Richard Taylor, commanding officer, Community Outreach and Community Affairs, NYPD and his crew were on hand and joined in and helped with the Turkey and food distribution.
Mirocznik concluded by thanking Assemblyman Cusick, and Empire BlueCross and BlueShield Shoprite for their generosity in helping to make the Turkey and Thanksgiving food distribution the success that it was.