The young helping the even younger

Photo Courtesy of Rose Bennett Gilbert
Shopping with the girls is Dan Mitchell, a member of the vestry at St. George’s Church, where members have long supported the North Porch mission.

MAPLEWOOD, NJ — Four middle school students from the Youth Group at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Maplewood scoured the aisles at Target earlier this month, hunting best buys on baby food and toiletries for needy mothers at the North Porch Women and Infants Center. Armed with a $300 Outreach grant, Jessica Bullis-Martinez, Phoebe Hill, Keira Mahoney and Isis Maxwell filled their cart with formula, baby food and other critical necessities to be distributed through North Porch centers that reach some 3,200 young mothers in Newark, Paterson, Dover, Hackettstown and Wharton.  Founded in Newark in 1980, North Porch takes its name from the north porch of church buildings, where women were allowed to gather for companionship, help and protection.