A Glimmer of Good during the Pandemic – People helping People
by Brian Coll
If you’ve driven along Fayette Street sometime in the past few months, you may have seen a table outside of the Hussey family offices….. They are located between 7th and 8th avenues. There is a sign for CNS Insurance services, that is Chris Hussey, his brother J.P. moved his mortgage services to the same office building recently and that is why I call it the Hussey family offices. If only it stopped at Chris and J.P…. nope, brother Nick works there as well. Before I start with my conversation with Rachael (J.P’s wife) let me tell you something.. I didn’t know any of the Hussey family until a few years ago when we got involved in creating the kick off party for the Conshystuff food drive to benefit the Colonial Neighborhood Council. J.P walked in as a stranger and all these years later it feels like I have known him and his family my entire life. His parents are amazing, his brothers and their wives and kids are amazing. They all work so hard in our community. And THIS, This next thing… is just one example, and they have been doing this since March…
Here is a conversation I had with Rachael, we have been working on a larger, before school type event and she has the details for us…..
So, Rachael… we’ve known each other a few years now through the CNC and the kick off party for the food drive that you and your husband (J.P) and family host every year. First, let me tell you…. my family loves your family and your community involvement. It didn’t surprise me when you guys took it upon yourselves to provide free food since the quarantine started and you’ve been keeping it going over the past few months. Tell us about the idea and how you’ve been able to do it….
The idea came from my mentor and very good friend and Conshy Native, Aimee Sala. Aimee is the owner of Aim High Studio in Fair View Village. When COVID started and the studio had to close its doors to indoor exercising, they opened them to feeding the local community. I really felt compelled to want to do more and I knew the need for food would only grow stronger. So between The Hussey Team- Mortgage Advisors owned by my husband J.p Hussey and Nick Hussey and my brother in-law Chris Hussey who owns CNS insurance we came up with the idea to serve weekly lunches. We have been doing this for about 16 weeks so far. On average we serve 20-40 bagged lunches a week. We set them outside the office. They are available to anyone who needs them. We do not watch and we ask no questions. Take what you need. It could be a mom walking who just needs a snack for their hungry kid (trust me, I get that, it could be a construction worker who forgot their lunch, or it could be someone who really needs it that day. We felt that if we had the ability to stay open in this current climate , we should be doing something for the community we work in. It’s our way of making a small difference in the Conshy Community.
Things like that are what make Conshohocken great. And…. Aimee is an amazing person. I have known her and her family most of my life. Thank you…. is this something you see going into the fall?
Truthfully, we would love to sustain it as long as we can. We have been fortunate to have friends, clients, family, and local businesses donate lunch and funds for us to purchase lunches. We would love to partner with more local Conshy community members and businesses.
From my perspective…. this really helped. My first concern was feeding the kids who were helped out by school lunches. The school district was able to pick up and help out there. I have seen families with younger children as well as adults who may have been displaced from jobs take advantage of your free lunches that have been outside….have you seen a trend?
Everything we put, goes!!! More people taking advantage of it? I do think some people do depend on it. Less as the summer went on? The demand has not gone away with summer here.
We briefly talked about someone really stepping up their game to help out one day soon, something about a neighbor named Nick?
Nick Pisano the owner of Burly Dove is one great example of a partnership we have to serve lunches. We have been blessed with family, friends, and other small business owners who have donated food, full lunches, and money to make this all happen. Honestly I could name 20 people who have reached out to make this all possible.
Wow, that sounds awesome. So Nick is coming out and setting up one day soon… Is that the Thursday we talked about, the 20th?
Rachael, anything I can do? Anyone else in the community? If someone wants to help out, can they reach out to you?
Come by on Thursday August 20th from 12-3 at 706 Fayette Street. Get a pulled pork sandwich from Nick and other snacks. Drop off a jar of peanut butter or jelly that day too. All donations will support the Colonial Neighborhood Council. Our goal is to collect 100 peanut butter and jelly jars that day. If you can’t make it, drop it at our door.
If you are interested in partnering with us to serve lunches, please reach out to Rachael Packer at firstname.lastname@example.org. We truly believe that we can make a difference. It does not have to be big, it just needs to be something meaningful!! Support Small Businesses-they are your community members!!!!
Rachael, thank you… really, thank you on behalf of so many people in our community who have gotten a snack on a walk or have leaned on the meals you and your entire family and circle of friends have provided. See you Thursday the 20th. I also think it’s really cool you’re having a collection of Peanut Butter and Jelly that day!!!