Yesterday morning I got in my car to run some errands, but I forgot to wear my gloves. Within minutes, my fingers were so cold that it was painful to touch the steering wheel. Once the car's heating system kicked in, I felt much better.

But the cold made me think about some of the homeless men and women, who have no respite from the cold. It made me remember a man in Glen Cove, who was living in an abandoned car a few years ago-and froze to death. It made me remember a young immigrant who was living in a make-shift tent last year in a wooded area of Huntington, who died of hypothermia when the temperature dropped to 18 degrees.

It reminded me of a woman who lived in her car for two years with her two young daughters.

It reminded me of the thousands of homeless veterans who don't have a warm bed to sleep in, who don't have a hot meal waiting for them, who feel hopeless and alone and unable to cope.

Then I thought of the Interfaith Nutrition Network (INN), which has 19 soup kitchens feeding record numbers of hungry Long Islanders, and has three emergency shelters that house 100 men, women, and children every night of this cold winter.

With the current budget crisis, most municipalities are cutting back on social services for the most vulnerable members of our society. So, it's up to us-you and me-to step forward and support nonprofit organizations like the INN, which serve as a life-line to so many of the homeless, the hungry, and the poor.

If you'd like to help our neighbors in need, please make your check payable to: The Interfaith Nutrition Network. Donations may be mailed to: Dave Golbert, 7 Lee Court West, Great Neck, NY 11024. To donate food or winter clothing or to find out about volunteering, please call 917-418-2451 or email: davegolbert@yahoo.com

Your generosity gives hope to those who need it most.

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