Fundraising Breakfast Benefits Hearts of Mercy

By Eric Englund | Sep 11, 2019

Manahawkin — The Italian-American Club and men’s and women’s clubs from the Four Seasons at Mirage in Barnegat are sponsoring a breakfast at Applebee’s in Manahawkin for Hearts of Mercy on Saturday, Sept. 21, at 8 a.m. Kristin Santorelli, who founded Hearts of Mercy with her husband, Mark, said the group reaches out to individuals and families and in need.

“We meet many that have been evicted, have lost jobs, moms and kids leaving unhealthy situations, and families or individuals living with friends and are ‘homeless,’” she said. “Love, acceptance and open hearts go such a long way. Everyone needs and deserves a second chance.”

Santorelli said one of Hearts of Mercy’s priorities is offering mentoring to the children in the area.

“They may have a single parent that are busy working and trying to keep it all together, or no adult in the home the majority of the time,” she said. “These sweet children need that extra touch with homework, tutoring, a ride to practice, someone to listen and remind (them) how special they are.”

Over the summer, the group sponsored a five-day overnight at Haluwasa Camp in Hammonton, hosted several pool parties and took children to participate in the Hooked on Fishing event in Harvey Cedars.

“We attended a Lakewood BlueClaws game,” said Santorelli. “The kids met the players and had the opportunity to be on the field and playing catch with the players. We will be having a coat drive in October, so we’ll be collecting donations of new or almost-new coats of all sizes.”

Tickets to the breakfast are $10 per person and include eggs, sausage, pancakes, juice and coffee. Reservations are limited, so call Santorelli at 908-783-0269. E.E.

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