So Percussion, Outreach Northeast, Donate 20,000 Meals to Crisis Ministry

So Percussion is helping provide 20,000 meals to the hungry in Mercer County.
So Percussion is helping provide 20,000 meals to the hungry in Mercer County.


Thanks to the music group So Percussion and aid organization Outreach Northeast, the Crisis Ministry of Mercer County will receive 20,000 meals for people who visit the nonprofit’s three food pantries.

More than one and a half tons of donated macaroni and cheese meals will be packaged Sunday on the campus of Princeton University through a collaboration between Outreach Northeast and the So Percussion Summer Institute.

Outreach Northeast is part of the national nonprofit Outreach Program, which is based in Iowa. The organization is on track to package and distribute a total of three million meals to hungry people worldwide by the end of 2015. The nonprofit is providing the ingredients for the meals and the materials and expertise for packaging them. So Percussion Summer Institute participants raised the funds for the food. Forty volunteers will package and box meals in Woolworth Hall on Princeton University’s campus Sunday, July 26, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

By Monday afternoon, the ready-to-prepare meals will be headed to the shelves of the Crisis Ministry’s three pantries and into the kitchens of their low-income clients.

Matthew Martin, Director of Outreach Northeast, said he is pleased to work with Josh Quillen of So Percussion for the project.

“Josh wanted to give the students some sense of hunger in the area,” Martin said. “When I told him that over 400,000 people go hungry just in Mercer County and the seven adjacent counties that surround it, he was blown away. He has already pledged to make this an annual event.”

The So Percussion quartet has been reviewed and featured in publications such as The New York Times, Rolling Stone, and the Washington Post. So Percussion is performing in and around Princeton and leading percussion and composition workshops and master classes for its summer institute through August 2. The group will be performing a public concert at the Princeton Record Exchange on Friday, July 24, at 1 p.m.

“It is important to support the communities where we are involved, and the Crisis Ministry can help us to help the community,” Quillen said of the meal project.