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"The M25 Initiative is a 501c3 non-profit in Cumberland County, NJ created for the sole purpose of engaging, equipping, empowering, and mobilizing the local church and faith-based organizations to employ innovative and cooperative solutions to alleviate suffering, feed the hungry, end poverty, reduce crime, revitalize a spirit community and transform lives!"
The Cumberland County Code Blue program began in Bridgeton, NJ by Bridgeton Mayor Albert Kelly, Dr. Rob Weinstein, Rev. Ellen Rutherford, and Captains James and Maria Stephenson was created to provide "Warming Centers" as a way for homeless persons in the community to find shelter from frigid overnight temperatures during the cold winter months.
A "Code Blue" is initiated when temperatures are 32 degrees with precipitation or 25 degrees without precipitation. Warming Centers are housed by host churches on a rotating basis from 6 PM to 6 AM. The Code Blue Season runs from November-March.
Since the humble beginnings in the fellowship hall of St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Code Blue programs have developed in Vineland and Millville. Vineland's Code Blue program has been ably led by Cathy Gardner, while Millville's leadership team includes Rev. Stephen Harris and Anna Marie. The success of these efforts has been the many volunteers and participating organizations who have donated time, money, and food to this cause.